Cooking isn't a skill you can pick up through reading alone. Watch chefs, enthusiastic home cooks, and even a surprise celebrity guest demonstrate cooking skills everyone can use in this roundup of 10 great instructional cooking videos.
10. Cut a mango
A very helpful father shows you how to find the "axis" of a mango, giving you the most efficient yield of a delicious summer treat.
9. Separate an egg
There are many ways to extract egg whites, yolks, and shells separately, as WikiHow details, but the easiest method involves the tools you've got built into the ends of your arms. Bay-area video blogger Hilarie shows us how to use your hands and three bowls to separate eggs into elements for baking, health-conscious recipes, or those who just like to keep things orderly. (Original post)
8. Sauce pasta the right way
Italian chef extraordinaire and lover of food talk Mario Batali explains to the Serious Eats film crew the way to sauce pasta—which, for most people, means less of the red stuff. "What you want to eat when you eat a bowl of pasta ... is pasta." (Original post)
7. Gordon Ramsay's "Perfect Scrambled Eggs"
If the idea of smooth, almost creamy eggs makes you cry foul, you won't dig Hell's Kitchen star and renowned British chef Gordon Ramsay whips up what he calls the "perfect scrambled egg," with crème fraîche (or sour cream or yoghurt as a fill-in) and absolutely no overcooking. Otherwise, looking at the results, you might join with your Lifehacker editors in hoping for a free weekend morning to try this out and make "the missus" or mister very happy indeed. (Original post)
6. Slice and dice an onion like a pro
Rochester chef Art Rogers demonstrates for Lifehacker how to get consistent slices using the "knuckle guide" technique, and then neat, consistent, less-messy diced onion with horizontal and vertical cuts. Yeah, the video's a little shaky and has its brief out-of-focus moments, but the knife skills are front and centre. (Original post)
5. Pit a ripe avocado
Gina shows off her California livin' skills by showing the easy way to pit a ripe avocado and not lose any of that precious precursor to guacamole. (Original post)
4. Mince and crush garlic
Rouxbe, a high-resolution, seriously detailed food tutorial site, is sponsored by the Northwest Culinary Academy of Vancouver, and it shows in the step-by-step nature of their videos. Their "Drill-down" on mincing and crushing garlic offers a great close-up view of what a knife should be doing when the recipe calls for either of those things. To be honest, one editor learned that "crushed" doesn't just involve smacking a whole garlic clove with the flat of a knife, so a few other of Rouxbe's free sample videos (full access requires a subscription) might get a viewing later this weekend. (Original post)
3. Make sushi rice
This video, pulled from VideoJug's well-organised Food & Drink section, demonstrates perhaps the most crucial and time-consuming task of sushi making—getting the rice right. Cooking just long enough and using a fan properly are elegantly demonstrated, and by the end, you'll know enough to buy some seaweed wraps and ingredients and try out your first few rolls.
2. Well-done hamburgers that aren't hockey pucks
Whether you're eating healthier, accomodating a food safety fan, or cooking for the little guys, sometimes you've got to grill your hamburgers all the way through. America's Test Kitchen demonstrates the best way to cook a well-done hamburger. Like their magazine recipes and tips, this comes by way of lots and lots of trials and tests, and it's a pretty ingenious work-around: 80 percent beef that seems fatty, but mostly cooks off; a mixture of bread, milk, seasoning, and A1 steak sauce tossed into the beef; and a small divot pressed into each burger's top to make cooking more consistent. Be sure to click the video for the larger view.
1. Chicken on a throne (starring Christopher Walken)
We are not made of stone, and we could not resist including a clip of America's most surreal superstar, humbly demonstrating in his own kitchen how he makes roasted chicken with pears. More important than the crazy vocal cadence or his recipe, though, is the technique, sometimes referred to as beer can chicken or "chicken on a throne," though technically known as indirect grilling. By resting a bird on a moisturised stand (a flap of fat in Walken's case, and a can of soda, beer, or water in most others) and keeping it hoisted, you get juicy interior meat, crispy skin, and a kind of freakishly fun sight to show guests while the meal's cooking.