Mar 01

Get creative in the kitchen

Not only is cooking an essential skill, it can be great to give vent to your creative side. There is a lot of scope for experimenting with cooking methods, ingredients and most of all- presentation.

The kitchen can be great to vent your creativity

My adventures in the kitchen began only when I was forced into it by one of the turns in the roller coaster of life. Suddenly, I found myself responsible for getting a meal on the table, and I had no idea I would enjoy it this much. What made it even better was the fact that my husband enjoyed it so much. We enjoyed spending time in the kitchen together and discovering new recipes.

The very first thing I experimented with was with ready to cook noodles-Maggi. I tried adding sauces and chicken flavor instead of the masala/ spices they provided. I tried to make it in chicken stock and just went with what seemed like a good idea. It not only yielded some great concoctions, but made for a fun activity. Of course there were disasters. But that is all part of the fun!

Of course, another way to experiment is with the method for cooking.

Try baking parathas instead of pan frying them. They retain the taste and are way healthier. Slow cooking is a great method for some preparations. It helps bring in flavors that pressure cooking or normal cooking cannot provide. Creativity at its bestCreativity at its bestTry some experiments with your favorite dish. Add a few new ingredients, cook it in a slow cooker-it may just become better. And if it doesn’t, you had some fun and discovered that not all experiments can yield the best results!

Not only with ingredients and cooking methods, the kitchen is awesome if you have an artistic aptitude. Use it to present your food creatively. Half of the appeal of a dish lies in its presentation. If it looks good, you are most likely to enjoy it more. Of course taste and aroma have major roles to play too, but since our eyes are the first to get in touch with the food, it must appeal to them most. I am sure most of us remember the thousands of times that we just didn’t feel like eating something because it looked bad, even though it may have had the most outstanding taste.

With food, the color palette is just so wide and textures and combinations are infinite. And the colors are rich and so diverse. And presentation matters for each thing that you place on the table- be it a salad, soup, entrée, or most of all-the dessert. Ever wondered why desserts always look so great? Its because they are meant only for the taste buds. There is rarely a need for dessert in terms of nutritional value. So the dessert loses its charm if its appearance does not impress. I have rarely seen a bad looking cake, for instance.

Some of the fanciest restaurants and the best chefs spend a lot of time to make sure the appearance of the food meets a minimum standard before any of their customers can lay eyes on them. Its what gives the food that extra touch- and makes you salivate before you have even had a chance to taste it.

So go into the kitchen today and try a new dish. Put some ingredients together, toss them in a pan, and cook it in an unusual cooking method. Finish it up with a colorful garnish, and you may have even surprised yourself. Just a word of caution-make sure you have backup for dinner 😉

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