Sharing a few tips today specifically for cooking proteins on your stovetop. Enjoy!
Sit at Room Temperature. Take your protein out of the fridge to sit at room temperature for about 20 minutes as the first step of your prep while you gather any other items you need. This will help it cook more evenly.
Heat Your Pan. Turn the heat on your pan and let it come to temperature for a few minutes so it is hot (but not smoking) when you add your meat. Add the oil just before cooking and let it heat up about a minute.
Dry Your Meat. Pat dry any excess moisture from your meat. This ensures it sears and crisps properly instead of steaming in the pan from the excess moisture.
Don’t Flip Too Eagerly. Be patient when turning proteins over – this is how you get a nice crisp or sear. In addition, if you turn it over too soon (especially chicken or fish), the protein will actually stick to the pan more than if you had waited. As it cooks, the meat will usually release from the pan a bit on its own.
Use a Meat Thermometer. Stop cutting into your meat or wondering when it’s finished and get a meat thermometer! Check the thickest part of the protein for your desired doneness or to check if it is cooked through. Meat thermometers are also handy for braises, oven roasts, or grilled meat – you can get some with a very long cord to a monitor to leave the thermometer in the oven or grill the entire time.
Let it Rest. Let your meat rest after cooking (a few minutes for small pieces, 15-30 minutes for larger roasts). Your meat should not sit so long it becomes cold, but to redistribute the juices so it doesn’t all immediately leak out when sliced or cut.