The In-laws are coming over? Entertaining to impress? Never cooked before but want something that tastes awesome?
You are not going to believe how easy this is….
Make the best tasting food ever without learning how to cook.
Our body biologically craves certain flavors. Psychology has also found tricks that make food taste better without adding calories. Here are the ‘cheat codes’ to making food taste good. This is a scientific approach to the taste of food.
To combine all of these ‘cheats’ into a single dish to win taste buds and minds over.
The following have physiological and psychological triggers to a human body:
Vitamin C- An essential nutrient for multiple aspects of the human body.
Sodium- An essential nutrient that helps regulate many blood functions.
Simple Carbohydrates- Quick energy that can be metabolized easily.
Fats- Long term energy, also used in many essential body functions.
Amino Acids- Same as previous items, the body is always looking for help.
Vibrant Visuals- Variety of color means better variety of nutrients
Aromatics- When your nose can smell it, your body is telling you to eat.
(Optional) Capsaicin- Spiciness in foods cause endorphins to go off. You become happy from eating this because your body still is telling you to keep eating regardless of the pain.
To utilize all of those we add the following (note: add slowly and taste as you go) to a dish when we want to impress:
Vitamin C- Acids – Ex: Lime Juice, Lemon Juice, Vinegar
Sodium- Salt, taste as you go, we still aren’t going to be adding a McDonald’s amount of salt.
Simple Carbohydrates- Sugar and/or Flour, go easy, we only need a bit. Brown sugar or syrups can be used for a deeper flavor.
Fats- Oils/Butters/Fats/ Creams/Gravies, not for taste, adds a ‘feeling’ of smoothness in your mouth. (Can be flavored for extra taste!)
Amino Acids – MSG, monosodium glutamate. It’s not unhealthy, it’s not dangerous, and the media has misinformed people on this subject. Some people are allergic to MSG, similar to how people are allergic to Peanut Butter or Strawberries. MSG is safe. It can be bought online, it comes in tiny grains, typically a pinch can be added to dishes. Alternatives to MSG: Worcestershire sauce, Fish sauce, oyster sauce.
Colors- Vegetables and fruits contain a vast array of colors, steam or gently fry them. We don’t want them brown. We want them bright!
Aromatics- Garlic, onion, or mirepox (carrots/onion/celery) are common.
Capsaicin- Hot sauce, cayenne pepper, black pepper, remember this is optional.
Psychology trick- Name your food, “Grandma’s Chili” tastes better than “Chili”.
Layer up- In a recipe, add these to each component in a dish in addition. Ex: Chicken – salt, Veg oil, lime juice. Rice – Salt, Vinegar, sugar, MSG, butter. Veggies: salt, olive oil, hot sauce.
Taste as you go. Add a little bit of each one and taste. Consider having a bowl of cooked food to test the outcome of adding each. Next time, pick a dish you already like, and modify these slightly. You can’t take out salt once you added it.
Enjoy your new diet, new flavors, and new eating and life habits!