Posted: Apr 29, 2014 10:00 AM
Savvy cooks know things that you and I don’t. It’s true — there are cooking tricks of the trade that make cooking easier. Food bloggers share their essential tips and tricks of the trade. Make your — cooking — life easier by learning what they know about garlic, pomegranates and more.
Photo credit: kazoka30/ iStock/360/ Getty Images

Clever cooks know things that you and I don’t — until now. Food bloggers share their essential kitchen tricks and tips to make cooking easier.

Kitchen tricks- BetsyLife

Photo credit: BetsyLife

Tear-free onion chopping

Betsy Haley cooks and blogs at BetsyLife where she shares a sunny perspective on food, pets and creating the life you crave. Her savvy kitchen tip is how she manages to chop onions without tears. She says, "I use an alligator chopper for everything. It not only prevents the dreaded "onion tears" but it also dices all vegetables perfectly and quickly which ensures even cook times!"

Kitchen tricks- Mommy Hiker

Photo credit: Mommy Hiker

The right way to chop an onion

Jennifer Fontaine started her blog Mommy Hiker in the hopes of inspiring other parents to get outdoors with their kids to explore and discover the wonder and beauty of Mother Nature and in doing so, she has inspired herself. Her savvy kitchen tip is how to chop an onion the right way. She says, "Cut the onion in half, lengthwise and place both halves in the freezer for three minutes. Place the flat sides of the onion down on the chopping board and make a horizontal slice all the way through, cutting each half in half again. Slice the onion vertically against the grain, then cut intersecting lines perpendicularly. Voila!"

Kitchen tricks- Spicie Foodie

Photo credit: Spicie Foodie

Two easy ways to peel garlic

Nancy Lopez-McHugh shares healthy, fresh and delicious recipes on her blog Spicie Foodie. Her savvy kitchen tips are two super easy and fast ways to peel garlic. She says to keep cloves as dry as possible and then try one of these two techniques. The first way uses a knife. Nancy says, "First, cut off the bottom of each clove. Then lay the flat side of your knife on top of the garlic clove and gently but firmly press down until [the clove] flattens. Now [you can] simply pick up the crushed garlic clove and remove the skin, it will slide right off!" The second way uses a garlic press. Nancy says, "Simply put the garlic clove with the skin still attached inside the press and squeeze until you see it come out the little holes. Be careful because the garlic juice can squirt out. Now open the press and remove the remaining skin from inside. It comes out in one piece!"

Kitchen tricks- (Cooking for) Kiwi & Bean

Photo credit: (Cooking for) Kiwi & Bean

Store your veggies (the right way)

Sarah Huggins is a working mom of two who shares delicious, quick, kid-friendly recipes for a busy life at (Cooking for) Kiwi & Bean. Her savvy kitchen tip is a time-saver and a surefire way to keep your family filled with veggies. She says, "To save time and boost your family's veggie intake, wash and chop your vegetables as soon as you get them home from the grocery store and before you stash them in the fridge. I've always got containers of washed and torn greens, carrot sticks and broccoli and cauliflower florets sitting in my crisper. When dinner rolls around, I just dump them into a salad bowl, roasting pan or pot of cooking pasta. Easy!" She also adds, "Store your tomatoes on the counter or windowsill — not in the fridge — for better flavor!"

Kitchen tricks- 360 Family Nutrition

Photo credit: 360 Family Nutrition

Slice and dice the easy way

Kristen Smith, R.D., blogs at 360 Family Nutrition, a blog dedicated to eating healthy within the entire family. Her savvy kitchen tip is a way to make slicing and dicing a quick and simple task. She says, "Skip the knife when slicing small fruits and vegetables. An egg slicer will slice an entire piece of fruit or vegetable in seconds. This works perfectly on everything from mushrooms to strawberries and bananas."

Kitchen tricks- Donuts, Dresses and Dirt

Photo credit: Donuts, Dresses and Dirt

Let's talk about fruit

Sheri Silver writes the lifestyle blog Donuts, Dresses and Dirt where she writes about baking and cooking, gardening, parenting and her adventures in and around New York City. Sheri's savvy kitchen tips have to do with fruit.

First, she explains how to get those delicious but pesky pomegranate seeds out. She says, "Pomegranate seeds are such a bear to remove, [so] here’s an easy way to do it. Simply halve the pomegranate and hold one half, cut side down, over a bowl. Using a large spoon (I use a wooden spoon), give the fruit some hard smacks all over. The seeds will literally fall right into the bowl. I advise doing this over the sink and wearing an apron — there’s not much spattering, but that juice stains like crazy."

And second, she shares the easiest way to peel an orange. She says, "Peeling oranges is soooo yesterday. Try this trick next time instead. Simply slice the ends off (try to avoid cutting the flesh) and make a vertical slit along the side. Gently unroll. Voila. A perfect “strip” of orange segments!"

Perfect hard-boiled eggs — every time

Kitchen tricks- Garnish with Lemon

Lisa and Anna are the two friends behind the blog Garnish with Lemon where they share recipes that enliven family meals. Their savvy kitchen tip is how to make perfect hard-boiled eggs. They say, "Making perfect hard-boiled eggs is easy when you use this method: Place eggs in a deep saucepan in one layer. Cover with cold water (enough water so the eggs are fully immersed and water level is an inch above eggs) and bring to a boil. Turn heat down and simmer for one minute; cover with a lid and remove from heat. Set timer for 12 minutes and let eggs sit in covered pan of hot water. When timer goes off, immerse eggs in a cold ice water bath. (I drain and fill the pan I used and add a big bowl of ice cubes to the pan along with cold water.) Let eggs sit in cold water for five minutes and voila — perfect hard-boiled eggs."

Photo credit: Garnish with Lemon

More on savvy cooking

Best recipe apps
How to effectively use a chalk wall in your kitchen
How to make your own spice mixes