4 Tips to Make Your Cooking Stand Out

Since cooking is something we do every day, it can be tricky to think of new, exotic, and inventive ways to make meals unique. This can be frustrating when trying to create a showstopping dinner party, or a successful date night. However, there really are many simple ways you can easily spice up your dishes for special occasions. 

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Here are four ways to take your cooking up a notch, for when you really need to wow someone!

Use High-Quality Meat

If you’re making a dish where the meat is the centrepiece, the standard of the meat is what will really make or break it. Source and cuts of meat can vary widely in quality. Thus, ensuring you choose a cut that is of a premium grade is a sure-fire way to ensure your meal will really stand out. Choosing the right type of meat is also of great importance. Chicken and beef are popular and readily available, but are also highly common. Instead, you may consider choosing a more unconventional meat to truly individualise your meal, such as a delectable bone in tenderloin of pork. 

Try Out Unconventional Cooking Methods

Ingredients are far from the only thing that go into a truly outstanding meal. The way that they are cooked can have as much to do with the final outcome as the constituents themselves. Different cooking methods can produce a huge variety of different flavours and textures. For instance, pan-searing meat and fish is a highly effective way of sealing in flavour, and can also give your food a rousing finish.  Alternatively, slow roasting a joint of lamb or pork is great for creating juicy, soft and tender cuts of meat. When using less common cooking styles, it is always important to never leave your food unattended, however. This is because things can easily go wrong when attempting methods you are less familiar with.

Playing with different, more labour-intensive cooking methods is a great way of distinguishing your meal, as they often involve more work than we have time for on a daily basis. You may also want to then experiment with how the different flavours and textures cooking styles complement one another. For example, try pairing a creamier sauteed side with a seared meat or fish which retains more bite. 

Experiment with Spices

The right herb and spice combination is another thing that can turn your meal from pedestrian to extraordinary. A great place to start is learning what flavours classically complement dishes. Bold flavours such as paprika and ginger can really jazz up a chicken dish for example, whereas beef tends to combine well with earthier flavours like onion and peppercorns. From there, you can truly create something unique by trying out different spice combinations to see what effects they bring. Consider the constituents of the dish when doing so – if you have a side that is quite plain for example, you could add some kick to the main meal with some red pepper flakes.

Focus on Presentation

Presentation is probably the thing we pay the least attention to when it comes to everyday cooking. That’s why simply attending to a few aesthetic details can really make your dish pop. Paying attention to colour is an easy place to start – try to pair your food with contrasting colours. This will make any dish look bright and vibrant. Conversely, plates made up of similar colours can appear dull and unappetising. Varying height in a meal is another simple yet effective way of adding a light, aesthetic touch to your cooking. 

What’s your favorite way to make YOUR cooking stand out a bit?

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