Take the 2-minute tour ×
Seasoned Advice is a question and answer site for professional and amateur chefs. It's 100% free, no registration required.

Many a recipe or package instructs: 'cook uncovered' without stating a reason. As a general matter, is this to protect me from boilover, or does it have some more subtle purpose?

share|improve this question
add comment

1 Answer

up vote 23 down vote accepted

Simmering uncovered serves two purposes. The first is liquid reduction. Simmering with a lid on causes condensation on the inside of the lid that will drip back into the food. If you're trying to reduce the liquid, the steam needs to be able to evaporate away.

The second purpose is temperature regulation. With a lid on, the heat won't dissipate quickly enough and your food will eventually advance beyond a simmer and potentially throw off what you're making.

share|improve this answer
add comment

Your Answer

 
discard

By posting your answer, you agree to the privacy policy and terms of service.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.