What’s the best water for cooking?

The question bank in the world of cooking is never empty! Someone recently asked me about using hot water for cooking….if there are any benefits or drawbacks.

When we talk of cooking we should take into consideration not just the process of cooking by the application of heat but also the processes involved in the making of food.

Significantly there is not much of a difference between the use of hot and cold water in cooking but yet they have their own specific advantages and cannot be always interchanged.

It is observed that egg shells crack when eggs are slid into boiling water. This happens due to sudden agitation of water and coagulation of the egg white. To prevent this it is advisable to add a few drops of vinegar. Alternately you can put the eggs in cold water and then bring the water to a boil thus increasing the temperature of both the water and the egg gradually.

When blanching of vegetables like leafy vegetables and green peas or French beans it is always done in boiling water for a little while and then immediately dunked into icy cold water. This way the vegetables retain their colour and crispiness.

Hot water is usually added while making a pulao or a gravy only to hasten the process of cooking. It does not however add to the taste or texture of the end product.

While churning cream to separate butter from the milk cold water is used as it helps the butter to coagulate faster. While kneading flaky pastry dough chilled water, in fact, icy water, is suggested.

More than the temperature of the water it is the amount of water which is crucial in the process of cooking. Moreover the temperature of the water makes no difference to the nutritional value of the end product.

Yes, hot water is wanted in the kitchen as it helps in washing up the dishes faster!

Here are some dishes that are simple to make so that cleaning up is easy…

Char dal ni khichdi
Sookhi Dal Amritsari
Quick Khopra Pak

Till I write again
Sanjeev Kapoor.


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