Jules Clancy gives us some tips to help you combine the right flavors when you’re cooking. Then try out her flavorful vegetable and curry combination.
By Jules Clancy
When you’re starting to cook it can seem like a mystery as to why recipes use certain flavor combinations. If you’re beginning to cook without recipes, it should not be a stab in the dark.
Actually, even if you’re new to cooking, you’re not new to eating. All those years of having three meals per day have taught you some very important lessons. You know mostly which flavors taste good together. It may not be something you think about consciously, but the knowledge is there.
How do you avoid making mistakes with flavors?
1. Back yourself.
If you were making a sandwich you’d know what flavors would work. Wouldn’t you? So all you need to do is trust your instincts. If you think something will taste delicious then it probably will.
2. Study the classics.
The next step is to bring your ‘subconscious’ flavor combining knowledge to the front. The best way to do this is to learn from the classics. There’s no need for you to be ‘reinventing the wheel’ every time you step into the kitchen.
- 2 heads broccoli, chopped into little trees
- 1 lb (450g) ground chicken
- 3-4 tablespoons green curry paste
- 2-3 tablespoons fish sauce
- 1 bunch basil, leaves picked & torn if large
- Heat a little oil in a wok or large frying pan on a super high heat. Stir fry the broccoli until it is bright green and starting to soften but still a little crunchy. About 4-5 minutes.
- Remove broccoli from the pan. Add a little more oil then stir fry the chicken until no longer pink.
- Add back the broccoli, curry paste and fish sauce. Stir until everything is hot.
- Remove from the heat. Taste and season with more fish sauce and curry paste if needed.
- Serve with basil leaves scattered over.