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While boiling, a common method of food preparation, usually destroys too many nutrients in the food, steaming helps to keep some of those nutrients intact. Steaming is particularly useful if you want to keep a crisp texture in your food, compared to the boiling, which ends up making foods too soft.
- Stir frying
Stir frying involves using only a spatula to stir your foods as they cook in a pan with very little oil. This is another useful method to cook food since the short time stir frying requires for proper cooking allows for most nutrients to remain in the food.
Sautéing is slightly different from stir frying, in that this method requires you to move the pan and flip the food around using your mastery of the panhandle, as opposed to the extra utensils you need for stir-frying. Sautéing is particularly useful for making tasty and nutritive food if you have a wide stainless steel pan.
Eggs are the food most commonly associated with poaching, the cooking of food in a liquid, but this strategy can also be used for meats, fish and even some vegetables and fruits. With meats, poaching your food in wine or broth with some added spices can have uniquely tasty results. When poaching, you want to avoid using high heat so that your food doesn’t end up boiled.
Roasting means cooking over an open flame, and this is a time-tested method to cook vegetables that require a little effort to get their natural flavor out. Roasting is especially useful if you want to make a sweet carrot dish. Usually, you’ll want to roast vegetables until they are tender and slightly browned.
Cooking food in an oven is another way to prepare a very tasty meal. While baking isn’t the most healthy way to cook since it does reduce vitamin content more than some of the other methods, it’s still worth using since additional fat, other than selective use of olive oil, is not needed for a great baked meal. Using nonstick utensils will be a great help, since oil is needed even less.
Cooking with a crockpot is a great strategy for healthy cooking by those who need to work while the food is being prepared. The long period of time for which the food cooks does reduce its nutritional content, but the convenience of this method makes it a great option for busy people who still want to eat deliciously and healthily.
While generally associated with the tradition known as the family barbecue, grilling is a very useful tactic to make your vegetables and healthy meats palatable. This requires some effort, such as cutting vegetables in such a manner that they won’t fall through the cracks, but you can get amazing flavors from preparing healthy foods on a grill.
If you want to prepare foods for consumption much in advance, you can always use this method to still have healthy food at your disposal at any time. You can use pressure canners, or the more DIY method of water bath canning. This involves boiling your vegetables or fruit for five minutes, adding them to the jar with some space at the top and a teaspoon of salt, and securing tightly. You should do some research beforehand to ensure the vegetables or fruit you’re canning can survive this process without contracting a harmful food-borne illness.
Usually, microwaving is a last resort for those wanting to eat healthily, but it can be used properly if you use microwave-safe containers and arrange foods in a manner that they can all be cooked evenly. Make sure to stir every so often for soft food and liquids so that the microwave doesn’t end up forming hot and cold spots in your meal.