Season 3, Episode 9: Kitchen Confessions
Marcela: store-bought salsa
Sunny: pancake mix
Katie: whipped topping, but she doctors it up with sour cream
Jeff: whipped cream in a can
Geoffrey: peeled garlic
These are the shortcuts that the stars of the Food Network show, The Kitchen, use in their cooking when they need to get something on the table fast, and don’t have time to whip up all the components from scratch. (For those of you who watch the show, this is an old episode that I was watching the other day; Marcela is no longer on the show now.) They were very ashamed of these secrets, and I was hysterical laughing as I watched this segment. Anyway, they might be ashamed of them, but they don’t mean they’re not good chefs; I mean, I might not be a chef on Food Network, but I am a teen chef who uses shortcuts a lot (mainly because my mom doesn’t want me to make more of a mess than I already do, but still, some are just better for all of us). There’s canned beans (something that most of us probably use often because we don’t want to bother soaking dried beans overnight and letting them cook the next day for multiple hours), canned/frozen fruits and vegetables (certain canned ones actually taste good; I like canned corn, artichokes, hearts of palm, peaches, pineapple, mandarin oranges, etc., and there are frozen fruit/veggie mixes made for smoothies and stir-fries, etc.), pre-made pie crust (I bet most of you use it just like me; I make homemade pie crust every once in a while, but it’s just not something that I want to make all the time because it can be time consuming), jarred sauces (I make some of them homemade a lot now, like marinara and basil pesto (my favorite), but I use these ones on occasion, very little, though), condiments (so, you can certainly make homemade mayonnaise and ketchup and barbecue sauce and stuff like that, but so far, I haven’t, so you don’t have to either, although I have made flavored mayos for sandwich spreads and sauces, and I’ve also made a sauce similar to barbecue sauce, but it has some different flavors to it), etc. These are just a few of so many different kitchen shortcuts you can take, some of which are farfetched, so just know that (I’m talking about the condiments). Speaking of which, when I comes to making sauces, I learned a trick from Guy’s Grocery Games (well, I saw it on an episode, but I probably had the trick in my arsenal before then): when you can’t afford a lot of things or whatever it is, you can always use some store-bought sauces to create your own sauces, and I find that it goes beyond just doctoring it up sometimes (sometimes, not always, but still: I think this could be helpful). So, yeah, I find that these are just great tips, and definitely, when it comes to cooking, shortcuts are the way to go if you want to make things that are quick and easy, and I think that especially for people who are really busy, which I think is most of us, these would be most helpful.