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Cooking is the application of heat to food to prepare it for eating.

Reasons for Cooking.

Food is cooked for any or all of the following reasons :
1. To make it more easily chewed and digested.
2. To improve it's flavor and appearance.
3. To kill any germs and parisites it may contain.

Methods of Cooking.

The method to be used in cooking foods depends, on among other things, upon (a) the nature of the food and (b) whether it is desired to extract, partially extract, or retain the juices. The heat is applied in a variety of ways: by (1) radiation, (2) hot water or steam, (3) hot fat, (4) hot metal, and by combinations of these.

1. Boiling is cooking in boiling water. In this case the cooking water is usually drained off and not used.
2. Stewing is long, slow cooking in water below the boiling point. The pot is tightly covered, and the enclosed steam assists in the cooking. The liquids are usually served with the dish as gravy or are made into a soup.
3. Steaming is cooking by either moist steam, as in a steamer over boiling water, or by dry steam, as in a double boiler.
4.Roasting and 5. Broiling In the olden days meats, especially, were commonly cooked in the direct heat of a glowing fire or over a bed of coals. Small pieces were broiled and larger ones roasted, a tin reflector being used for the latter.
6. Pan broiling is cooking in a hot frying pan. It is used when it is not conveneint to broil directly over a fire.
7. Baking is cooking in an oven. It is quite the same as roasting and broiling, which it has superseeded. Batters, doughs, and vegetables are usually spoken of as baked in an oven, and meats as roasted.
8. Pan baking is cooking on a hot griddle, as pancakes are cooked.
9. Frying is cooking by dipping or immersing in hot fat. Fat, unlike water, will heat to a temperature of 500°F or greater. Doughnuts, fish, and potatoes are foods commonly fried.
10. Sautéing is cooking in a small amount of hot fat. Omelets and hashed browns are sautéd.
11. Braising is cooking in a small amount of water or stock in a covered dish in the oven. It is a combination of stewing and baking.
12. Fricasseeing combines sautéing and stewing.

Taken from Domestic Science Principles and Application by Pearl E. Bailey, 1914.

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