With testing recipes for a living, it has become my job to question how to bring life to recipes when life may be a little flat, sweet, salty or spicy. Pun intended, recipes often need a little tweaking through the testing process and understanding how to balance flavors without starting from scratch, is a skill all chefs should have. Here is a quick breakdown to fix some of our most common obstacles when it comes to serving a perfectly balanced meal.
Too Flat: Add an acidic agent like vinegar or lemon juice. When something is “missing something” or just seems a little, “flat,” acid helps give it life and brightness.
Too Sweet: Add a little acid, like vinegar or lemon juice which will help to cut through the sugar and balance out the flavor profiles.
Too Salty: Try diluting it (if applicable) with water or stock. If that doesn’t work try adding sweetness, like honey. The best rule of thumb when it comes to seasoning your food, is do it as you go realizing you can always add more but you can’t add less.
Too Spicy: Add dairy. I especially like to do this with sauces (Greek yogurt is my go to) and even soups! And worse case scenario, if you are in the midst of dinner, offer everyone a glass of milk!
Now that we have this in our back pocket, lets roll up our sleeves and get back in the kitchen. We have some cooking to do!
Cheers to starting a new tradition around The Table Together!
Founder and true believer in the power of bringing people around The Table Together!