4 Small Touches to Your Meals That Will Take Them to the Next Level

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    Cooking can be fun. It’s always great to experiment in the kitchen and see what new recipes you can come up with. Try adding a supplement for richer flavor. Remember: spicing things up doesn’t just mean spice. Thinking about the basic ingredients, what beverages you’ll serve with it, what appetizers you’ll prepare, even what kinds of oil, stock, or dough to use can push your meal to the next level. These small touches can make a big difference.

    Oil

    Oil is perfect for frying or drizzling over a finished meal for presentation. What oil you will want to cook with depends on what you are preparing. Extra virgin olive oil is the best choice when it comes to heart health because it has the lowest oxidation rate. Oxidation promotes free radicals that contribute to toxic cell damage. Olive oil works great as a dressing or combined with vinegar as a bread tip. Avocado oil is also a great pick. Its smoking point is higher than olive oils which makes it better suited for meals that you cook at higher temperatures. Higher flavor oils like peanut oil, walnut oil, or sesame oil can give your dishes a unique taste. Oil might seem like one of many small touches, but it can have a big impact. Whatever oil you choose, tasty and healthy is the perfect combination.

    Stay Hydrated

    Obviously, if you’ve overdone it on the flavor there’s no better rescuer than water. Don’t settle for just tap water though. Better tasting water is one of the small touches that can elevate a meal. 20 Oz Bottled Mineral Water for Sale is a thirst quencher in bulk. Mineral water typically contains nutrients like calcium and zinc. Calcium is good for bone health and can be easier to absorb if consumed through water rather than dairy. Mineral water also can have a more complex, richer flavor, while still being the perfect way to cleanse your pallet. That said, mineral water can also be rich in sodium, a contributing factor towards high blood pressure. Enjoy the flavor of mineral water but consume it in moderation.

    Alcohol

    You may have heard the saying “I cook with wine. Sometimes I even put it in the food.” Wine doesn’t just have to be a complement to your meal. It can be an essential ingredient. This is because alcohol plays well with both water and fat molecules. The result is a headier aroma and richer flavor. If you are concerned about the alcohol content it largely burns off through the cooking process. To bring out the flavor of the wine, you’ll want to let it simmer with what you are cooking. Avoid the temptation to purchase so-called “cooking wine”. Those wines tend to be inexpensive and therefore lack the body you’re going for. The wine you choose to cook with actually mirrors the wine you’d pair with the food itself. For example, a darker liquor cooks well with dark meat like beef. Gin and tequila are lighter spirits that cook better with white meat. A good rule of thumb is not to use alcohol for cooking that you wouldn’t want to drink.

    Go Meatless

    Even the most devoted carnivores among us can switch things up every once in a while. Eating less meat is good for the planet and for you. Additionally, knowing how to cook it is a great skill if you have any vegan or vegetarian guests over. There is a burgeoning market of plant-based meats that actually look and taste like the real thing. Cooking them isn’t difficult. It’s just a learning curve. If you were cooking burgers for example, start with a grill as you would with any other “regular” meat. Cook for three minutes on each side so they end up about medium-rare. Plant-based meats taste the best if they are formed into thicker patties and enhanced with seasonings. Go bold: barbecue sauce and sharp cheddar can be good choices here.

    Building confidence in the kitchen is a valuable life skill. It’s never too late to start. Lay the foundation with simple recipes first and use the tricks above to help you become more adventurous. If you lack confidence, try something in the appetizers or as a side dish. Cooking is a skill that requires time and patience like anything else. If you experiment, learn from the best, and take the time to learn these small touches, you’ll be sure to elevate your meals from good to great.