Asian Recipes

Asian Recipes Blog

The Unrivaled Practical Guide for Asian Cooking

Flavor as the sense of taste

The complex quality of food that affects our sense of taste is known as flavor. Most people can distinguish four basic flavors: sweet, sour, salty, and bitter. But studies have revealed that at least four more flavors exist.

To layer flavors, add a little bit more of the herbs, seasonings, or wine that was added at the start of cooking. This technique works best in dishes that simmer, stew, or braise for a long time, such as hot soup, stew, pot roast, or spaghetti sauce. Add the second layer of flavor 20 to 30 minutes before the cooking is complete.

To create big flavors, use multiple forms of the same ingredient. For example, you could use fresh ginger, crystallized ginger, and ground ginger to boost flavor in gingerbread. Or, in a sauce, use fresh or canned tomatoes, tomato paste, and sun-dried tomatoes. Combined lemon juice and lemon zest for bigger lemon flavor. Combine dried and fresh mushrooms for deeper mushroom flavor. Each form of an ingredient has its own flavor, but when combined, two or three forms create a bolder, more exciting flavor.

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10:41:52 on 04/26/09 by Webmaster - Quick Cooking Tips -

Food Garnishes

"The eyes are the first to feast" is an old saying that contains more than a grain of truth. Garnishes can be as simple as a sprig of parsley or as elaborate as exotically carved vegetables and ice sculptures. To garnish food, make sure that the garnish complements the dish. For example, if a chicken dish is seasoned with basil, tuck a few leaves of fresh basil under the chicken as garnish. Or use lemon twist on seafood. Always garnish a plate just before serving. Garnishes that sit on a plate for too long, even if refrigerated, are likely to fade and look less than fresh by the time they get to the table.

To make a simple citrus twist, cut a thin slice from a lemon, lime, or orange. Cut the slice from the center to one edge. Twist and stretch to form an S shape.

01:07:08 on 04/03/09 by Webmaster - Quick Cooking Tips -