What are your strange, secret and personal cooking tips?

This post is for a good cause: meeting the BF's mother who is a multitasking, innovative genius in the kitchen. As for me....well, not so much. My steaks are charred on the outside and rare inside, and my fish is always burned...even if I steam it. And don't get me started on turkeys. Whoever said we had to cook turkeys on that infamous American holiday must been slightly sadistic. (I can still hear my friends clucking over the ruins of late November when I pulled out a 6 pounder out of the oven...still defrosting: "mmm, turkey on a stick.") Is there any technique, ingredient, or overall strange, secret and personal tip that makes you a culinary wonder? Any tips will be welcomed!

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