The Simple Secret to Brightening up your Midweek Meals
04 June 2018 | Schwartz
We all know one person who can whip up restaurant-quality meals out of the simplest of ingredients in minutes. So what’s their secret? Well, it’s actually a lot simpler than you may think. Rather than throwing together lots of big, bold tastes, they take the natural flavour of the ingredients and use some clever tricks to take them to the next level. And good news – it’s cheap, quick and easy.
1. Look for seasonal recipes...
Anyone who’s bitten in to a perfectly ripe peach knows this one to be true – however you serve them, seasonal foods just taste awesome. So what’s in season when? Most proteins such as beef, lamb and chicken are perfect year-round, but the addition of a seasonal sauce or side is a great way to get the most out of a dish. Here’s a rough guide to some of our favourite ingredients:
Summer – Aubergine, carrots, mackerel, salmon, tomatoes
Autumn – Apples, blackberries, broccoli, plum, sweet potato
Winter – Brussels sprouts, kale, mussels, orange, pumpkin
Spring – Bell peppers, crab, grapefruit, halibut, spring greens
Simply finding a recipe that focuses on a key seasonal ingredient is a sure way to add a little extra pizazz to your midweek meals.
2. ...or create your own
Craving a family favourite? No problem. It’s easy to try a new spin on your signature dishes with the addition of seasonal ingredients. How about dad’s mac and cheese with sweet pumpkin pieces, mum’s ratatouille topped with flaky mackerel, or your signature chicken pie with a few stewed apples? There’s loads of ways to adapt and transform whatever you’re craving into seasonal splendour.
3. Enhance with clever seasoning
And how to make the most of those natural flavours? Bring out the depth with a touch of simple herbs and spices. Sea Salt is the natural go-to for this task, as it reduces the bitterness of sweet dishes and increases umami flavours in savoury meals. But you can also use other herbs and spices to create full, rounded flavours. Ground Black Pepper, for example, is perfect for enhancing seasonal fruits, while Basil brings a lightly aromatic quality to savoury dishes.
4. If you have time, use it
Spices add a boost of flavour to seasonal dishes, but what if we said you could add an extra oomph to those spices themselves? Lightly toasting spices in a pan over a low heat releases an even greater aroma, then transfer them to a mortar to crush out all of that extra essence. This simple process only adds a few extra minutes onto your cooking time and makes a huge difference to the end result, especially to heavily spiced dishes such as curries.
5. And if you don’t, cheat!
Well, not cheating really. After all, our recipe mixes have already been expertly blended for you, using only the very best herbs and spices from across the world. Each one consists of a subtle, savoury base layer, followed by a core of fragrant, earthy herbs and spices, finished off with zingy top notes, all perfectly balanced by our master blenders. And with dozens of different world cuisines, gluten free options and slow cooker specialities available, you can enjoy all kinds of incredibly tasty meals in a flash.
Want to experience a whole new world of flavour? Awaken your senses with Schwartz.