We’re all used to it by now. We spend hours creating a finely-tuned, rather difficult recipe. Potato skins litter the kitchen, sauce stains splatter our apron and a slight bead of sweat betrays any sense of calmness in our stance. But it’s done. The dish is ready to go and we go to sit down and eat…
Only to find the dish is nowhere near as tasty as it looked in the pictures. In fact, it’s pretty bland. But, hey, we don’t worry, because our old friends salt and pepper are there to sort out the job!
This is a typical evening in households around the globe, and it can get quite monotonous, spending hours on dishes only for them to taste almost exactly the same as the last one.
So what’s the answer? Create dishes that actually taste good? Well, that’s not always possible. Not all of us are Gordon Ramsay, and sometimes we simply don’t have time to put more effort into perfecting our cooking skills. No, the trick is the seasoning.
Did you know, for instance, that there are more seasoning options other than just salt and pepper? Crazy, right? Well, there are, and we’re here to tell you about them. Here’s a list of the very best seasonings you should add to your tabletop to ensure your next meal is a complete success:
Although many people only use thyme in the actual cooking process, thyme is a perfectly good seasoning to have on the tabletop. Think of it like a lemon that is always ready to squeeze. It has a slightly citrus-y flavour, along with a mintiness that can elevate any dish that you’re serving. Try it the next time you cook steak and you’ll find your table has turned into a michelin-starred restaurant!
Many people haven’t heard of this one. Za’atar is one of the most popular spices in Israeli cuisine. It’s a mixture of herbs including sumac, sesame seeds, salt and cumin, and it works perfectly with fish dishes such as salmon or cod. Make sure you’re organised with your shakers, however. You don’t want to put this spice into the wrong dish, so invest in unique salt and pepper shakers to distinguish the difference!
You can’t go wrong with paprika. If you go for some top notch Spanish smoked paprika, you can enhance any dish with a bit of a smokiness that salt and pepper simply doesn’t bring. It’s not hot – although it is often mistaken for chili powder – and it works perfectly with barbecue or red meat dishes.
Although not technically a seasoning, you can buy ground basil from most grocery stores, and it works just as well as salt and pepper does when it comes to enhancing your dishes. Basil certainly works best with tomato dishes or dishes like pasta or spaghetti. Really, though, you can add a bit of basil onto anything and it will immediately lift the flavour.
There are some amongst us who don’t really want to elevate their dish, but rather add a bit of pizazz to it. Ordinarily, these people will resort to hot sauces like Tobasco, but we recommend simply grabbing some chili powder and using that instead. Hot sauces can often entirely change the flavour of a dish. Chili powder, however, provides that kick without manipulating the fundamentals of the meal itself.
Tags: cooking, food & drink