These expert tips will help you achieve the perfect balance of flavours.
15 May 2013 - 6:53 PM  UPDATED 6 Sep 2013 - 9:31 AM

Best mashed potato

For the perfect mash boil or steam floury potatoes until tender. Drain and cover with a clean tea towel to dry out. Meanwhile warm cream or milk and butter gently in a small saucepan. Peel away potato skin and press through a potato mill into a clean pot. Beat in milk mixture. 

De-bearding mussels

To de-beard a mussel grab the beard (the byssal threads that connect the mussel to the rocks in the sea) with your fingers, and pull them out, tugging toward the hinged point of the shell.

Deep frying

If you are deep frying and do not have a thermometer, you can test if the oil is ready by dropping a cube of crustless white bread in the oil. If the oil is hot enough the bread should be golden brown in about 60 seconds.

Porridge with salt

Porridge in Scotland is cooked slowly and gently to create a thick consistency. The Scots would never dream of sweetening their porridge, instead choosing to flavour it with salt.

Over crowding the deep fryer

Do not over crowd your deep fryer. The fried food must have bubbling hot oil all the way around it for it to cook evenly and quickly. If you put too many ingredients in the deep fryer at once it will reduce the temperature of the oil resulting in a soggy mess.