One of my favorite terms when it comes to cooking any recipe is “tweak it”. The key to “tweaking” a recipe is discovering what flavor profiles you enjoy, being able to apply them to any recipe and make it your own.
Learning your herbs and spices will help you to identify new flavors and be able to apply them to different foods. Don’t just stick with the ground or powdered spices. Add some dried leafy spices in there too. Cilantro, thyme and parsley add nice flavor to many dishes. Fresh herbs are absolutely awesome if you have the opportunity to use them. Basic spices you should always have handy: sea salt, cracked or ground black pepper, garlic powder, onion powder and cilantro or parsley. This isn’t the end all, be all to pantry must haves… but these basics will get you through many a meal prep.
Recreating dishes that you’ve tried elsewhere and making your own recipe based on what you tasted in that dish can be a blast too. You can just wing it based on the flavors you picked up on or you could research recipes online and either try one that sounds just right or make up your own from a variety of recipes. The possibilities are truly endless.
Another source for learning new flavors and techniques are online streaming food networks and videos. I have been cooking since I was a little kid and thought I knew quite a bit about cooking until I started watching the talent and learning the new tastes that are out there. I find myself learning something new all the time and it has really opened me up to trying things I wouldn’t even have thought of.
Follow these simple guidelines, be adventurous with your recipes and your cooking. Soon you’ll be saving up all of the recipes that you have made your own and creating your own recipe box. Bon appetite! and Happy Cooking ! (My tribute to Julia and Jacques !)