More and more we are observing a call to cut back on salt, fat and processed sugars. Many try and often find the end result of their “healthy” cooking to be both bland and less than inspiring. Some would say, SO WHAT, its for your health, learn to live with it. I say, no £$£@%? way!!!
Tasty food is about quality cooking and seasonal and fresh ingredients, period. It’s not about excess and the heavy hand of fats, salt, and sugary products. As we have spoke of in recent blog posts, one needs to use a variety of techniques to flavour your food. Many people ask me how they can, “...spice up their food?” The answer is in the question!!!
The liberal use of spices, is not merely a substitute for fats and salts, but actually can increase the taste of your dishes. I am not talking about the season salt, supermarket blends of spices; I mean individual spices used with what is almost, just almost, reckless abandon...
- Toast whole spices such as cumin or coriander seeds to bring out deeper flavours before you toss with roast
- Crust a piece of fish, beef, or tofu with crushed fennel or smoked paprika before searing in a pan
- Braise vegetable or meats with a small handful of whole spices such as peppercorns, dried chilli’s, or cinnamon sticks thrown in ( blog post 4 May 2009).
- Toss a handful of black onion or mustard seeds in the pickling liquid when using up leftover seasonal vegetables (blog post 17 June 2009).
- Use a mortar and pestle or a clean coffee grinder to grind your own spices, as you need them, for max flavour.
- Buy spices in bulk, keep them sealed and out of the light, and use them with a heavy hand.
- Taste what you are cooking !!!!!!!
FINALLY.... Don’t add one grain of salt to your food till the end of cooking process... then and only then add and taste again.
And this is how you will end up with tasty food flavoured by your cookery and a whole lotta spices!!!