Apple tips Early apples tend to break down very easily—great for applesauce and very tender, juicy pies. Midseason apples cook up fairly tender and hold their shape, while late-season apples border on staying a little too firm and are a lot less juicy. So make your applesauce early in the season and store your late apples as long as you can.

Crème anglaise - one step too far?
If, like me, your eyes tend to glaze over whenever a recipe calls for crème anglaise then Ina Garten has the answer for you.

Swoosh, Swipe, and Grab are you getting the most out of your kitchen towels?
Do you even have kitchen towels no, not these, real kitchen towels.
The folks at epicurious will tell you why you neeed to rush out and get some and then why you should use a clean one every day.

Boneless, Skin-On Chicken Thighs the Best Cut You Can't Find at the Supermarket
In this epicurious article Adina Steiman sings the praises of the missing cut and shows how to quickly prepare them yourself

Why is room temperature butter important?
Butter has certain unique properties that distinguish it from other fats used for baking. It’s solid at room temperature, but unlike other saturated fats, it’s whippable—in other words, it’s capable of holding air. This is important in baking because during the “creaming” stage, in which butter and sugar are beaten together, the sharp edges of sugar crystals cut into the soft butter to create air pockets. This action aerates the batter or dough, which helps lighten the final baked good during baking.
For baked goods where lightness is a prized attribute—almost all cakes, some cookies—it’s important to start with room-temperature butter.
Using melted butter that is then cooled (but still liquid) can have a different but not undesirable effect. eg.chewier—rather than cakier—chocolate chip cookie.
If a recipe calls for room-temperature butter, make sure your other ingredients, namely eggs and any liquid dairy like milk or cream, are also room temperature. Because if cold eggs hit soft butter, the butter will immediately firm up and the final texture won't quite be the same.

How to Revive Stale Bread - by washing it??
epicurious has a quick trick to freshen up a (slightly) stale crusty loaf.

Baking pies in aluminum disposable pans
The good people at Cooks Illustrated have some tips for avoiding the dreaded pale crust

Taste and Adjust Seasoning - just what does that entail
Knowing how to get the most from your seasoning can make a big difference in your dishes. The folks from Cooks Illustrated have a few ideas on how to do that.

Is that a well seasoned sheet pan or something that ought to be in the trash?
In Praise of a Well Seasoned Pan and Clean the Brown Stuff Off Your Sheet Pans airs both sides of the debate.

There are two images associated with the word compost.
One is of a rotting, fly-infested cesspool of kitchen scraps that makes you gag if you get close. The other is rich, crumbly, pleasantly earthy smelling “black gold,” the stuff of gardeners’ dreams. Here are a few tips on how to avoid the former and have more of the latter.

The steak's still frozen? - cook it anyway!
Yes I know that the steak should be thawed in the refrigerator, taken out and seasoned, then 40 minutes or so later put on your favourite heat source. Well sometimes life just gets messy. Cook's Illustrated tells us why we can (should?) cook that steak right out of the freezer. Having finally tried it I'm convinced! That doesn't mean I'm going to freeze every steak I buy but I'll not likely be thawing many either.

How to Prepare Green Spring Produce
Most spring produce rapidly loses quality as soon as its picked. Asparagus and peas lose sugar and turn starchy. Fiddleheads start to decompose. The Serious Eats team shows you how to get the most out of those delicate vegetables by blanching.

How to Buy and Store Mozzarella Like a Pro
What else can be said. The epicurious article.

If that's not enough this article from FOOD52 covers the rest of your cheese

Is your brown sugar as hard as a rock?
Just seal the sugar in a bag with 3.5 grams of water for every 8 ounces of sugar and nuke for 15 seconds. No microwave? Just let it sit on the counter for half an hour. Source: Serious Eats

Asparagus time again and the annual debate is on
What's the best way to trim those tasty stalks? There are many adherents to the 'natural breaking point' school of thought and I admit I've broken many a stalk. If I do then I usually hold the stalk by the cut end, lay it on a flat surface, and bend. That's OK if you're doing a few for lunch but if you have a couple of pounds to process then it's much more efficient to cut the ends off. I just take my knife (very sharp) and pull it gently across the stem. It will slide across the tough bit but just about fall through the tender part of the stalk. Just line them up and cut. You'll be able to tell by the resistance if you're not cutting off enough.

Should You Add More Oil to That Sauté Pan
The folks at Serious Eats think so and tell you why in this article.

How to Clean Out Your Spice Cabinet and Organize it — for Good
An organized spice rack means a spice rack you actually use and Serious Eats has some great tips for optimizining your spice rack.

Coffee as a superfood? Well not quite coffee.
Coffee flour has more iron than fresh spinach; more fiber than whole grain wheat flour; more antioxidants than pomegranate; more protein than fresh kale; more potassium than banana; and less fat than coconut flour. The whole story.

Substitute for buttermilk? Not so fast there bunky
Stella Parks from Serious Eats explains why you should be holding out for the real thing and which rarely heard substitution actually works.

Just thrown out another part container of heavy cream? Make your own!
This won't do for whipping but for everything else 3/4 cup of milk (I use whole) and 1/3 cup of unsalted butter. Get the whole storey from Stacy Barr of the SixDollarFamily.

Cook the Whole Vegetable, From Stem to Core
Serious Eats cooks the whole thing.

Garlic the more you hurt it, the more it hurts you
Serious Eats explains the ways to coax (or bully) different flavours from your garlic,

Temp that salmon!
The folks at Americas Test Kitchen got out their thermometers and can tell us just how to get the best results for that pricey wild salmon (or the farmed stuff) you just bought. Perfectly cooked salmon

What are you doing with that whisk
The folks at Cook's Illustrated put their science hats on and put whisking techniques to the test. Bottom Line - If you're making a dressing or whipped cream, whisk side to side. Getting stiff peaks in egg whites, however, will go much more quickly if you beat the eggs. You shouldn't ever whisk in a circular stirring motion, as it's completely ineffective. Read the article here.

Just found a bargain on a bag of organic lemons? Well go ahead and freeze that juice but don't throw out the peel!
Peel can be easily dried and powdered for all sorts of uses as shown by brownthumbmama

Instant read thermometers yes you should have one
The Thermoworks Thermopen had been on my wishlist for just about forever but the US$100 price tag was keeping it there. When the folks at Serious Eats started saying nice things about the Lavatools offerings (yes there was a financial incentive) I looked around and found that others were of the same opinion. I've had my Lavatools Javelin for six monthe now and I too have only nice things to say about it. Great tool, great price. You should get one too.

Skimming fat off your stock or broth?
Use it to make a bird happy. The people at Iowa State University Extension & Outreach suggest that you make your own suet cakes.

Honey is good for you! - well it ought to be
Honey is one of nature’s purest foods. In fact, raw honey contains 22 amino acids, 27 minerals including calcium, iron, zinc, potassium, calcium, magnesium, and selenium. It contains vitamin B6, thiamin, riboflavin, pantothenic acid and niacin. It also contains nutritional digestive enzymes including diastase, invertase, catalase, glucose oxidase, acid phosphatase, and inulase. It is also rich in antioxidants.
All of the above is for RAW honey. Most supermarket honey has been filtered just because consumers have been trained to think honey is a transparent, gold colour. This does not generally affect the quality of the honey. Unfortunately quite a lot of imported honey is being ultra-filtered to conceal its origin (without residual pollen all honey looks pretty much the same). If the honey undergoes any processing beyond filtering then all bets about the food value are off.
Yet another product best bought locally. For more information see MyBeeLine and the National Honey Board (this is a USDA check-off organization).
Another source recently pointed out to me is an article by Jacky Miller in New Zealand. Unfortunately adulteration is a significant problem with manuka honey at least outside of New Zealand. The producers claim an annual output of 1,700 tons yet 10,000 tons are sold internationally.
On a much smaller scale is African Bronze Honey which is a Fair Trade, raw, unpasteurized, gravity filtered, natural honey produced by wild bees in Zambia and marketed by a company here in Canada. You might have to acquire a taste for this one as it has a very strong flavour.

How To Make Self-Rising Flour
1 cup of self-rising flour = 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder + 1/2 teaspoon salt + 1 cup all-purpose flour.

Cooking for one or two? - Tired of recipes that make 14 dessert servings? This chart can help while cutting those recipes down to size.
Cups here are US measure about 14.6 in3. You might also want to check out 6 rules for swapping baking pans at epicurious.

Pan Size and Volume
Dimensions (inches)Volume (cups)Area (sq in)
81 1/2550
91 1/26 1/264
928 3/464
10210 3/479
102.513 1/279
6 x 61.754 1/436
8 x 81.56 1/264
8 x 828 3/464
9 x 91.58 1/281
9 x 9211 1/481
10 x 10213 3/4100
11 x 7210 1/277
13 x 9216 1/4117
Jelly Roll
10.5 x 15.5111 1/4162
12.5 x 17.5115218
8 x 42.55 1/2
8.5 x 4.52.56 1/2
9 x 539 1/4
1 3/43/41/8
2 3/41 1/81/2
2 3/41.55/8
31 1/45/8
Heart Shaped

Put down that knife
Dental Floss cake cutter.

How to Take the Temperature of Your Turkey
Serious Eats has the scoop on turkey temperature testing which can be more difficult than it looks.

Are you in love with your crock pot?
Serious Eats takes a look at what the slow cooker does well and what it doesn't.

Get that baking soda out of the fridge
Baking soda has a few tricks in the bottom of the box.
And there's a better way to make the fridge smell good.

The right way to use a meat thermometer
Serious Eats article.

For the Crispiest Chicken Skin Grab the Baking Powder
Serious Eats to the rescue again.

Blind-Baked Pie Crust 6 Simple Tips
Stella Parks is back with more tips to make you (and me) a master baker.

Is that cake done yet
thekitchn has some tips (my money is on the thermometer!)

Get those potatoes out of the pot faster
Next time you need potatoes in a hurry put a kettle on to boil before you start the prep. Pour the boiling water over the diced potatoes and put them on high heat. Five minutes later and you're ready to go.

Pies not coming out right? Don't Blame the Humidity
Room temperature, or more precisely the temperature of the things in the room, play a much larger role. Stella Parks explains it all.

Are you freezing flat?
Serious Eats Kenji Lopez-Alt tells why it's better to freeze flat packed food and how to defrost faster.

Just found a lemon in the back of the crisper on its last legs?
Before it hits the compost bin use it to clean the microwave. In a shallow bowl combine half a cup of water, the juice and flesh of the lemon. Cook on full power for three minutes then let it sit unopened for another five. The condensation will do most of the work for you. Just wipe clean and catch any stubborn spots with your rag moistened in the lemon water.

Soup vegies - cooking times
The folks at Serious Eats came up with a guide to cooking minestrone which included the following chart of cooking times

Soup Vegetables
VegetablePreparation InstructionsMinimum Cooking Time
CarrotPeeled and cut into 1/2-inch chunks, sautéed at start until tender20 minutes
CauliflowerFlorets separated, stems sliced 1/4 inch thick20 minutes
CeleryPeeled and cut into 1/2-inch chunks, sautéed at start until tender20 minutes
Celery rootPeeled and cut into 1/2-inch chunks20 minutes
JicamaPeeled and cut into 1/2-inch chunks20 minutes
KohlrabiPeeled and cut into 1/2-inch chunks20 minutes
LeeksThinly sliced or diced, sautéed at start until tender20 minutes
OnionThinly sliced or diced, sautéed at start until tender20 minutes
ParsnipPeeled and cut into 1/2-inch chunks20 minutes
PotatoPeeled and cut into 1/2-inch chunks20 minutes
RadishCut into 1/2-inch chunks20 minutes
RutabagaPeeled and cut into 1/2-inch chunks20 minutes
Sweet potatoPeeled and cut into 1/2-inch chunks20 minutes
AsparagusCut into 1-inch lengths10 minutes
BroccoliFlorets separated, stems sliced 1/4 inch thick10 minutes
Hearty greens
(cabbage, kale, collards)
Tough stems or cores removed, leaves sliced or roughly chopped10 minutes
Green beansTrimmed and cut into 1-inch pieces10 minutes
Summer squashCut into 1/2-inch chunks or disks10 minutes
ZucchiniCut into 1/2-inch chunks or disks10 minutes
Tender greens
(spinach, arugula, watercress, chard)
Leaves roughly chopped or torn5 minutes
Brussels sproutsLeaves separated5 minutes
Frozen peasAdded straight from freezer5 minutes
Frozen lima beansAdded straight from freezer5 minutes
Corn kernelsCut off cob and separated into individual kernels5 minutes

I'm pastry shy
Pam Regentin is out to change that with her Pie Tutorial

When to boil the water?
According to the Farmers Almanac (and they ought to know) vegetables that grow underground go into cold water, those that grow above ground go into boiling water

Sugar doesn't melt it thermally decomposes!
You're not excited? Well you ought to be at least interested if you bake at all because this means you can caramelise sugar without liquefying it. Stella Parks explains how here.

Why does my ____ not come out like Chinese takeout - in a word, velveting
Velveting is a Chinese cooking technique used in stir-frying. The meat is coated in a mixture of egg white and cornstarch (rice wine or dry sherry and salt are frequently added), marinated for up to 30 minutes, and then cooked very briefly in hot oil until the exterior is just barely cooked. After velveting, the meat is added to the stir-fry, to finish cooking with the other ingredients.
About food has a recipe for traditional velveting applied to chicken while Serious Eats has a water based alternative.

The Wild and Native Foods We Should Be Eating
There are a lot of good things right under our noses that we ought to be bringing to the table.

Are you using your crisper to the max? I sure wasn't
Tommy Werner of epicurious spoke to a major manufacturer of refrigerators to sharpen his crisper skills.

Don't put those tomatoes in the fridge?
Another case of common knowledge being more of the former than the latter? Serious eats took a long look at the question in these two articles. Why you should and Further Testing Says... and stuck them in the fridge. However the folks over at broke out thier chemistry set a while back and came up with the opposite opinion
I still like mine at room temperature!

Can You Really Make Poached Eggs in the Oven?
Well yes you can. I saw this on thekitchen in a 2015/01/28 post credited back to the The Today Show. A cursory search for the oldest mention revealed an undated post prior to 2010/05/29 on Cooking Tip Of The Day so obviously clever people have been doing this for a while.
In a nutshell put 1 tablespoon of water and one egg into a well greased muffin tin and bake. There was consensus on the temperature at 350°F but times varied widely from 12 to 20 minutes indicating that your mileage will almost certainly vary. Our experiments support individual oven testing and using convection if available as our ovens had quite different results and real hot spots on one. Fortunately the time test (assuming you're using convection) can be done one egg at a time. DO NOT SKIMP when greasing the pan and break the eggs into a small dish to avoid having broken yolks. This could be good for perhaps 6 dozen eggs at a time though I've no ides how you'd get the toast done.

Better Bacon!
Rinse bacon in water before cooking to reduce shrinkage by 50 percent.
Bake your bacon, 365°F for 10 minutes

Your Reusable Shopping Bags Are Teeming With Bad Bacteria
Are you keeping your food as clean as you should?

How to Choose the Right Pie Pan (Hint: Cheaper Is Better)
Stella Parks picks a pan (and is somewhat surprised in the process)

Bacon confit - practical practice.
The next time you need to prep bacon for a crowd consider using this pre technique. Cover the desired quantity of bacon in oil then broil it for 20 minutes. Drain well and hold for service. Cooking to order will take no more than 2 minutes and the bacon stays flat to boot. See a more lengthy discourse on epicurious.

A Visual Guide to Cooking Greens
a great guide to greens from Epicuious

6 Measuring Mistakes That Derail Dessert
Why I prefer teaspoons to grams and other measuring tips from Stella Parks who knows about such stuff

Stop flouring your cake pans use sugar!
Give cakes a crunchy, sugary crust with this tip from epicurious

Want the perfect moist cake? Take its temperature!
The perfectly done cake is cooked to the right temperature just like your steak and chicken. See the article.

How to successfully microwave carrots
According to the Carrot Museum: Take a suitable dish which has a removable cover, we use a pyrex dish and lid (which is microwave, heat proof glassware). Take about a pound of carrots (half kilo) and put them in the dish. These can be whole carrots or sliced it makes no difference. Boil some water in a kettle and pour the boiling water over the carrots to cover them, then immediately pour off the water leaving the carrots still wet and the merest hint of water in the bottom of the dish. Put the lid on then Microwave at full power for about 5 minutes. This works every time.

Does microwaving vegetables deplete their nutritional value? Yup!
Though perhaps less so than other cooking methods. Generally speaking nutrient loss (for vegetables) is directly influenced by temperature, time, and water. Since microwaving uses little water, cooks the entire piece at once (as opposed to heating from the outside in), and does so in a much shorter time it ought to be a more gentle method. That's my two cents but you'll find lots of 'evidence' for other arguments, a distressing number laced liberally with vitriol.

How to do the Windowpane Test when Kneading Bread
The windowpane test is one of the best ways to tell if you've sufficiently kneaded your bread dough. Here's what you do.

The Best Way to Make Cauliflower Rice
Plenty of people want to skip white rice because it has little nutritional value or they think that it simply tastes bland. Cauliflower florets cut down into couscous-like granules are all the rage as a rice substitute. If that's what floats your boat then Epicuious has done the research for you.

How to Buy and Store Avocados
Avocados are that rare fruit that ripen off the tree, but you’re lucky if you come across a textbook-ripe one right off the bat. Most are either rock-hard or they’ve been “digitized," industry lingo for pressed and poked to the point of no return. Here's what you need to know about avocados or just a buying tip.

How to Buy and Store Coconut...Everything
What's the difference between virgin and refined coconut oil? Coconut cream and cream of coconut? Coconut milk vs. coconut water? The answer all these coconut questions and more.

Stripping Thyme Leaves with a sieve?
Push the end of the thyme stem through a hole and carefully but forcefully pull the stem through. The leaves will be collected in the strainer, ready to use whole or be chopped.

Perfect Poached Eggs with a sieve?
I gave up on poached eggs a long time ago because they were always messy. Once again Serious Eats has come to the rescue with a technique for perfect poached eggs.

The Magic Corn Trick no muss, no fuss
I discovered this too late for this season but will be sure to try it out next year. The Trick

The Perfect Pie Crust or at least what Serious Eats considers perfect
The Science of Pie Dough
7 Pie Crust Myths That Need to Go Away
How to Make the Best Pie Crust

Pro Tricks From a Restaurant Pasta Station
Tips to make your pasta sing.

Homemade Crème Fraîche
1 pint heavy cream
2 tablespoons cultured buttermilk
Combine buttermilk and heavy cream in non-reactive container. Cover and allow to rest at room temperature until thickened to desired texture, about 12 hours. Store in the refrigerator for up to 2 weeks.

Homemade Cultured Buttermilk
1/4 cup cultured buttermilk (from the store or home cultured)
1 quart milk (raw if you can get or otherwise whatever is in the fridge)
Also needed:
1 clean, dry quart jar with a tight fitting lid.
Pour buttermilk into the jar. Top off the jar with plain milk. Tightly screw lid to the jar and shake vigorously for 1 minute. Place in a warm (but not hot) area out of direct sunlight. Let it sit there for 12 to 24 hours, until thickened. Refrigerate when thick. Use within two weeks. If you re-culture this regularly, you can carry on re-culturing indefinitely.

Shrimp there's a razor-thin line between cooked and overcooked
I've practised safe poaching for my shrimp for a long time now but a recent article on Serious Eats has me thinking of changing my ways. They've also taken a long look at grilling shrimp, buying shrimp and Easy Techniques to Improve Any Shrimp Recipe which may be of interest.

Extra fat = stronger whipped cream
Whip 1 cup heavy cream as usual. Just after soft peaks start to form, add about 1/4 cup sour cream and whip to desired consistency.
Whisking makes the magic of whipped cream happen. The proteins in the membranes of fat molecules are stripped during the whisking process, causing the cream's fat to bond into a "skeleton" that holds air bubbles. It turns out adding a little bit of acid can help, as can adding a little extra fat. Bingo: sour cream has both acid and fat, so it helps stabilize the whipped cream. Crème fraîche or full fat Greek yogurt work great too. Read the epicurious article.

Sugar Makes Steak Better
Combine 4 parts salt, 3 parts brown sugar, 2 parts sweet paprika, and 1 part cayenne pepper. The Serious Eats article. And don't forget to get that salt on at least 40 minutes ahead of cooking.
Two more serious eats articles on the fine art of cooking steaks with some unusual advice such as flip your meat as often as you like, don't bother letting your steaks rest at room temperature, and perhaps most surprising fork or tongs - doesn't matter.
Tips and More Tips

Cooking With Olive Oil: Should You Fry and Sear in it or Not?
Should you avoid high heat for your olive oil? No.
Should you always reach for the olive oil? Well that's a different question and the SeriousEats take on it is here.

Turn the Kitchen Towel Into a Power Tool
The good folks at epicurious explain how to make full use of your kitchen towels and keep yourself safe with clean ones.

Just how stinky is The Stinking Rose
Well not quite stinky as the odour seems to change little but the bite of our favourite allium varies greatly depending on the preparation. Daniel Gritzer's article on Serious Eats, The Best Way to Mince Garlic has some interesting observations.

Buy A Whole Chicken Debunking 6 Objections to Buying A Whole Bird
A while ago (I really should date this stuff) I wrote about the advantages of deboning chicken breasts. Bethany Wright writing on Kitchen Stewardship makes a good case for never buying anything other than the whole bird

Garlic Peeling tip
If you have a quantity of garlic to peel then this tip from Saveur will be a welcome addition to your repertoire. Simply break the head(s) apart and put the cloves into a metal bowl. Place a similar size bowl on top (really any bowl that will let you hold the two together) and shake vigorously. I tried this with two cloves in my Jamie Oliver shaker. It worked but not as well as the bowl.

Show your microwave some metal
It's commonly believed that you can't put metal into a microwave oven. That's not quite true.
One piece vessels are safe in the microwave so stamped or extruded bowls are OK. Since the metal reflects the microwaves only wide, shallow bowls are really useful. See the article on HowStuffWorks. CAVEAT Do not let a metal bowl touch the side of the enclosure or it will weld itself to the wall.

Nuke your spinach
Trim, chop, add 1 Tablespoon water, nuke 8 cups (approx 8 ounces) for about 5 minutes on high (less if you just want it wilted). Since the spinach has very little mass and will cool quickly it's best to select a bowl that will retain some heat.

How much booze?
According to a study in 1992 by the USDA Nutrient Data Laboratory, The amount of alcohol remaining in a cooked dish is:

  • Boil liquid, remove from heat - 85%
  • Flamed: 75%
  • Baked or simmered for 15 minutes - 40%
  • Baked or simmered for 30 minutes - 35%
  • Baked or simmered for 1 hour - 25%
  • Baked or simmered for 1.5 hour - 20%
  • Baked or simmered for 2 hours - 10%
  • Baked or simmered for 2.5 hours - 5%

This information is widely attributed to the USDA but I have been unable to locate it on any official website.

Kitchen Tip -- Grease Fires
Salt tossed on a grease fire on the stove or in the oven will smother flames. Never use water; it will only spatter the burning grease.
Courtesy of

Foods to Ward Off Garlic Breath
Garlic is delicious, but its dragon-breath after effects can last days. New research suggests certain foods may offer a remedy. Studies show that parsley, apples, spinach, basil and other phenolic-rich foods help kick garlic breath. The polyphenols (compounds that act like antioxidants) break down the smelly sulfur compounds in garlic.

To bone or not to bone
In a not terribly scientific experiment I purchased a club pack of split chicken breasts, timed the deboning process, and weighed the results. There were four breast halves which took an average of 3 minutes to trim and debone (this package may have been produced by trainees on the night shift judging by the scrap). The results are shown in the following table. The cost of boneless skinless breasts was $10.54/Kg or about seventy percent of the store price.

regular club pack bone in skin on RCSS
Weighteffectivecost ofTime
wholedeboned% waste$/Kgscrap

Saving money for a few minutes of work (it works out to 8.5 min/Kg or $34.47/hr) always makes me happy and I ended up with 535 grams of scraps to boot. A bit of onion, carrot, celery, peppercorns, and water and now I have a couple of litres of rich stock. Another $4 in my pocket to add to the $4.29 that I saved already.

The Knife - care and feeding
Knives are one of, if not the most important tool in the chef's kit. A sharp knife is a thing of beauty while a dull one is a threat to all who use it. I've looked at some of the many resources online and assembled some of the ones that make the most sense to me and put them here

Free Knife Care and Maintenance Tips

I have written about Murray Carter before in my compilation of knife care resources. This man has doubtless forgotten more about knives than most of us will ever know and now he has written a compilation of Free Knife Care and Maintenance Tips which he is providing for absolutely no charge! These tips include:

  • Seven-Step Sharpening Procedure
  • Three-Finger Sharpness Test
  • How to Sharpen Anywhere, With Anything

And more... so go and sign up now. (lost link)
Check out Murray playing with paper airplanes.

Not Free (but not expensive) Knife Care Instruction

I have been watching Murray Carter's videos on YouTube and other sites for quite some time and I finally splurged (at $25 I suppose it's not much of a splurge) and ordered his new instruction video Blade Sharpening Fundamentals. He makes a compelling argument for eschewing other sharpening "systems" because they exclusively address the primary cutting angle of the blade and lock you into the "right" angle while ignoring the fact that the secondary angle will have to be adjusted to keep the blade cutting properly.
He makes no promises of instant success but if one were to follow his careful instructions then I expect that proficiency would soon follow.