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Food & Dining

Time is one of your kitchen’s five magic ingredients.


Chefs and celebrity chefs are always talking about the “potential” of every meal and ingredients, so it’s understandable to have high expectations for a basic weekday pasta dish. There will be days when the dishes you produce don’t meet these high expectations, regardless of your skill level as a cook.

A MasterChef isn’t possible for everyone who cooks at home. Yes, it is correct. “No, you can’t,” repeat after me: The same goes for you. Taking an hour to prep your vegetables and making your pie dough soggy is entirely okay. You don’t have to make every dish as good as Jamie Oliver’s.

After all that has been said, you deserve to eat food that makes you happy each time you take a bite out of it. Thanks to a few “cheat” items on hand, even the most bland-tasting meals can be elevated to contest kitchen status. It’s always the good idea to keep these materials on hand in case of a cooking emergency. You won’t regret it, I promise!

5 main ingredients for your kitchen:

zest of lemon

Hand zesting lemon

It takes a bite to believe in the rind’s enchantment that some of us have been tossing away for years without realising it. A half-teaspoon of this may infuse even the most uninteresting food with flavour and depth. In addition, no special tools, such as a microplane zester, are required. Just wash your lemons and grate part of the yellow peel in with your best and sharpest grater (avoid the white).

Lemon zest enhances the flavour of any meal, whether it is savoury or sweet. Make a dessert lemon-flavored by grating lemon zest over it or over a curry.

White Balsamic Vinegar


Also known as vinegar with a sour disposition. A tamarind juice and vinegar concoction is what you’ll get in this drink. Does this sound outlandish to you? It’s awe-inspiring. Adding a dash of balsamic vinegar to a meal rapidly enhances its flavour and sourness.

Use: Balsamic vinegar adds an incredible depth of flavour to pasta sauces, tomato-based gravies, and curries from Goa, despite its regular appearance on salads and pizzas. This is a strong and sour flavour, so use it sparingly.

Caramelized onions


If you’ve ever had chocolate milk with a sprinkling of salt, you know what we’re talking about. They’re like savoury food’s equivalent of dessert’s equivalent of salt. Packets of fried onions are available at supermarkets, or you can prepare your own caramelised onions. To begin, simply sauté a few thinly sliced onions. They may take some time to perfect, but the effort is well worth it. You’ll be piling them on everything before you know it because of their sweet and savoury flavour.

Use: Caramelized onions can be used in a variety of foods, including pizza, spaghetti, breads (including flatbreads), and even Indian cuisine.

Ground pepper from the ground


In the event that you have any pre-ground pepper powder in your home, toss it out as soon as possible. Honestly, it doesn’t contribute any flavour at all. Freshly ground pepper should be used on all dishes if at all possible. If that’s not an option, you may always buy whole peppercorns and grind them yourself at home. You’ll be amazed at the difference.

Many meals benefit from the spiciness and flavour that pepper adds. Try using pepper in place of red and green chilies in a variety of dishes, including pastas and eggs.


“Butter makes everything better,” you’ve heard of it? Exactly. A teaspoon of butter is all that is needed to give any sauce or dessert a rich, nutty flavour. Butter lends a distinct flavour to baked goods, particularly cakes.

Almost anything may be used for this. Add a tablespoon to basic rice or a veggie dish to spruce it up a notch or two. When baking, switch the last spoonful of oil for butter and watch folks fight over the crumbs.


What foods should be in every kitchen?
Foods You Should Always Have in Your Kitchen
  • Extra-virgin olive oil.
  • Nonfat Greek yogurt.
  • Canned olives.
  • Sea salt.
  • Tomato paste.
  • Fresh herbs.
  • Garlic.
  • Mustard.
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