I cannot deny that I had an interesting time growing up as a kid, so if I have to refer to yet another high moment for me, you will have to bear with me again. [lol] Growing up with a mother who, aside from her many business skills, included baking as a hobby, we had a cookery book that I, from time to time, explored.
My curious self always finds interesting dishes to uncover, especially confectionaries, which were my specialty since I got to put loads of sugar in the dough. Anyway, aside from best served chilled, one of the closing remarks on most recipes would be “allow to simmer” for two minutes [the time varies though].
In this post, I will try to stir up your culinary skills, but more importantly, I will be telling you what “allow to simmer” means whenever you encounter these lines.
As we proceed, you must bear in mind that this article has been put together by The Watchtower, a web design agency in Dubai and a leading name in the business of web design and development in Dubai.
What does "simmer" mean?
To get us started, please note that a liquid simmers when heated to a temperature slightly below boiling. In this phase, you will observe little bubbles forming to rise on the surface, which you will observe. It is advised to reduce the heat to keep the pot boiling gently at this stage.
This sensitive phase of cooking can mean the difference between soft stew meat and rough rice, as well as between fluffy and burnt rice. It is a major determinant of how your meal will turn out.
How do I simmer my meals?
Simmering is a gentle technique that refers to a specific temperature range used for cooking vegetables, soups, stews, and meat. In the culinary arts, to simmer something means cooking it in liquid at a temperature ranging from 180 °F to 205 °F. This process means that you'll observe some bubbles forming gently on the surface of the water, but the water is not yet at a full rolling boil.
I bet you must have come across a recipe instruction that says to bring a liquid to a boil, then reduce it to a simmer. This act ensures the liquid has come up to the proper temperature. It is advised that you reduce the heat at this stage and observe the pot's gentle bubbling.
When is it advised to simmer my meals?
Simmering is usually used for cooking, where a boil is too hot for the cooking time. It's the ideal cooking method for making stocks because it's hot enough to break down the cartilage in the bones but gentle enough that it doesn't produce large bubbles. The agitation of a full rolling boil can disrupt the clarification process, leading to a cloudy stock. There's nothing that needs to be at a full rolling boil. You are not a goldsmith.
Here is what simmering does for your meals. You know those tough cuts of meat that you experience when cooked improperly? This is a result of a protein called collagen. However, when heated to temperatures between 160 °F and 205 °F, collagen melts and turns into gelatin, which coats the muscle fibers of the meat to make it soft.
In conclusion, now that you have this information on cooking, I hope you live up to the standards in the kitchen. The heat of the stove should not be blazing when the meal is almost cooked out. Simply reduce the heat as advised to allow your meal to simmer between the boiling point and what most call low-heat, and once your meal is done, kindly serve the meal. I hope it tastes good.
The Watchtower, a web design agency in Dubai, is a leading name in the business of web design and development in Dubai.