The One Thing That Changed the Way I Cook Forever

by Damon on July 18, 2012

Eating healthy means cooking… a lot! Some people, the ones that don’t like to cook, will see this as negative and some, those that love cooking, will see it as a positive. But one thing is for sure, whether you love it, hate it or are indifferent about it if you want to be healthy you’re going to Polder Original Cooking All-In-One Timer/Thermometerhave to do it. Me personally, I really enjoy cooking when I have the time to do it. Now that’s not to say that I’m exactly good at it though but I do my best. The thing about cooking that has always amazed me is how much different the exact same foods cooked by two different people can taste, especially when it comes to meats. One person can cook steaks and they turn out as dry and hard as cardboard while another person can cook them almost exactly the same way but be moist, juicy and delicious. This is actually a very personal topic for me because not all that long ago I considered myself the king of cardboard steaks and petrified pork chops. It didn’t seem to matter what I did my steaks, chicken and pork chops never turned out.  I was always experimenting with things like different temperatures, times, cuts of meat even switching from the oven to grill but nothing seemed to change. My meats were almost always either raw in the middle or over done, I felt destined to be a mediocre cook. I tried reading about cooking online but that didn’t really seem to help. So as a last resort I started watching cooking shows on TV but most of them just were not very interesting to me. Then I found the BBQ Pitmasters on TLC. Now this show I could watch, at least often enough that I started picking up on a few little tricks. For example after watching only a few shows I noticed how much they talked about the internal temperature of the meat. I started talking with guys at work that did amateur BBQ competition about cooking and meat temperatures and they informed me that internal temperature was everything to good meat. They also told me that if I really wanted to learn how to cook meat properly I needed to get myself a cooking thermometer. So… that’s what I did. Why I didn’t think of talking to them sooner I’ll never know but glad I did.

My First Digital Cooking Thermometer

After deciding that I needed to buy a cooking/meat thermometer I did the first thing I always do when I’m going to buy something, started searching the internet. I soon found a few different models that looked promising and ultimately chose the Polder Original Cooking All-In-One Timer/Thermometer (Amazon Affiliate Link) because of its multiple features and inexpensive price. Plus it had won the Good Housekeeping Good Buy Award so I figured if they liked it so would I. Anyways, the first time I used my new thermometer I was cooking some big chicken breasts. I seasoned the chicken placed it in a baking dish and inserted the probe into the center of the biggest piece. I set the temperature alarm for 170 degrees and around 20 minutes later the chicken was done. It was by far the best chicken I had ever cooked. From that point on I was in love and now we use our thermometer every time we cook any type of meat. There are several things I like about the Polder for one the fact that it cut my cooking time in half mainly because I cooked everything for 45 minutes to an hour which is why everything sucked. I also like that I can set the alarm to go off either when the set amount of time as pasted or when the thermometer reaches the set temperature. I like that the unit is small, only about 2 ½” square and has a magnetic base which is nice for sticking it to the stove or grill. The magnet also allows us to store the thermometer/timer on the side of the fridge high enough to keep out of little hands. The probe that comes with this unit has a 43” cord plenty long enough to reach out of your oven onto the stove top or to a close fridge. It runs off of one AAA battery (included) which must last a long time because we have had our thermometer for almost a year and haven’t changed it yet. One other thing that I liked is that it came with a little chart with all the suggested meat temperatures. We attached ours to a magnet and placed it on the side of the fridge right next to the stove and thermometer. That way we always know what temp to set it to.

All in all I really do love this thermometer and recommend it to anyone that cooks. But I especially recommend it to those that struggle to cook consistently. It is almost unbelievable to me how much of an improvement using a thermometer made in my cooking and I’m sure you will have the same result.

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