Photo of Brendan McDermott

20 Essential Cooking Techniques

with Brendan McDermott
20 Essential Cooking Techniques
Master 20 accessible techniques that make cooking faster, easier and more delicious.

Embrace stress-free cooking and learn 20 techniques that will elevate everyday meals. Start by learning how to enhance flavors by toasting spices and nuts and clarifying butter for bright additions to any recipe. Next, learn techniques for making perfect eggs, including scrambled, hard-boiled and poached, and even master a folded French omelet with delicate green peppers and a hint of fresh thyme! Then, find out how to properly blanch and shock your favorite vegetables to preserve color, flavor and nutrition. You’ll even learn how to use scraps and save time by making your own chicken and vegetable stocks. Finally, always cook your protein to a perfect doneness, as Brendan demonstrates how to fillet and cook fish, tie up a whole chicken and even brown a mouthwatering pork tenderloin.

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Lesson plan

1:03

Lesson 1. Introduction

  • Meet your instructor, chef Brendan McDermott, and learn more about your class. Use it as reference to learn and review techniques and recipes whenever you need them!

39:23

Lesson 2. Enhancing Flavors

  • Toasting or "blooming" your spices really brings out their flavor, even if they're pre-ground. Brendan shows how to prepare whole and pre-ground spices for toasting in a pan on the stovetop, and what to look (and sniff) for as the spices bloom. Then try toasting nuts such as almonds and pine nuts, and learn how to clarify butter to use as a delicious cooking oil. You can even infuse it with herbs and spices!

15:44

Lesson 3. Hard-Boiling & Poaching Eggs

  • Achieve a perfect hard-boiled or poached egg every time you try. Brendan shares his tricks for boiling eggs and walks you through the poaching process. You'll even learn how to make many poached eggs for a crowd.

20:56

Lesson 4. Frying & Scrambling Eggs

  • Continue your egg-ucation with lessons on sunny-side up, over-easy and scrambled eggs. Then learn Brendan's method for producing a delectable French omelet.

9:22

Lesson 5. Blanching & Shocking Vegetables

  • Prepare vegetables for cooking or freezing by blanching and shocking them. This technique works great for dense, woody or bitter vegetables such as broccoli, carrots, parsnips, cauliflower, green beans and asparagus. Brendan demonstrates how the same technique makes it easy to peel tomatoes.

33:22

Lesson 6. Working With Chicken

  • Whole chickens can be intimidating, but Brendan demonstrates how to easily tie one up for a weeknight roast chicken dinner or cut it into pieces for baking or searing. Brendan's carving tips will serve you equally well for all types of poultry, from turkey to duck.

14:53

Lesson 7. Making Stock

  • Stock up on chicken stock with Brendan's quick and easy recipe that will make good use of the chicken bones and vegetable peelings that you might ordinarily throw away. Use it for making soups, deglazing a pan or boosting the flavor of rice.

29:22

Lesson 8. Working With Fish & Shellfish

  • Brendan takes the guesswork out of deveining shrimp and filleting whole fish, including how to easily remove the skin. Learn how to sear your fillets perfectly and create a quick and tasty pan sauce to go with them.

23:29

Lesson 9. Working With Pork

  • Turn a pork tenderloin into a neatly tied bundle that will cook evenly when you sear it on the stovetop and in the oven. Brendan shows step by step how to cook this flavorful cut and accompanying pan sauce that will soon become your go-to for a weeknight meal or impromptu dinner party!

"Chef McDermott is a great teacher. He explains each step in detail and makes it look easy. That is the beauty of this class, he takes the fear out of cooking. I enjoyed the extra tips and his teaching style. I thought I knew how to fry an egg, now after taking this class, my egg skills have gone to a new level. Can't wait for more classes from Chef McDermott! "
- Elcloz
Denver, CO

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Essentials
Food & Cooking
Culinary Techniques
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