Kelsey’s kitchen hacks: Fishers ‘MasterChef’ contestant shares top 3 cooking tips

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Cheer Kelsey on Wednesdays at 8 p.m. on FOX59

FISHERS, Ind. — We’ve been catching up with Kelsey Murphy each week for behind-the-scenes details about her experience on “MasterChef: Legends” and her reaction to each episode.

But this time we visited her at home with a different agenda: cooking advice.

Murphy, a physical therapist, wife and mom who lives in Fishers, shared her three favorite tips to simplify and improve your meals.

1. The fastest way to peel a clove a garlic — and why you never have to chop garlic again

Garlic is a staple in all sorts of recipes, but it can be a pain to work with.

You struggle to peel the garlic, then most recipes call for it to be finely chopped or minced, leaving a mess on your cutting board and a lingering smell on your hands.

In the clip below, Murphy demonstrates the fastest way to peel garlic and she offers a trick for avoiding the mess of chopping or mincing altogether.

2. Why it’s important to salt your pasta water and how much salt to use

Many people skip this important step when cooking pasta, but Murphy explains why salting your pasta water is crucial to how the dish turns out.

(And, nope, it has nothing to do with how long it takes the water to boil.)

Even for those who do salt their pasta water, you might not be adding enough. Murphy explains how generous you can get with the salt shaker and how to check whether you’ve added enough.

3. How to tell if your meat is done

Even experienced cooks can struggle with this one: How can you tell if your meat is done without cutting into it or using a meat thermometer?

Both of those methods will cause your meat to lose precious juices, so you run the risk of drying it out.

Instead, grab a needle or a cake tester and try this method. Murphy offers one tip for meats like chicken, beef, and pork and a different tip for fish.

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