We feed first with our eyes, not the mouth. So use these tips to prepare appealing healthy food that really looks and tastes irresistible.
When we first see food, our vision nerves send signals to our brain whose job it is to stimulate our taste buds. When the taste buds get stimulated, we then begin to salivate and feel hungry.
Such a serious process and it would be quite disappointing if, after this process, the food tastes terrible! The shock… I’m sure most of us must have felt it at one point in our lives.
Healthy meals will only look and taste great if we want it to. You will need to learn how to enhance their natural flavor by cooking and seasoning it properly.
Healthy vs Unhealthy Food
When you are not used to eating healthy foods such as vegetables, fruits, poultry, lean proteins, whole grains, fish and so on, you may not feel eager to try them out.
You will need to get accustomed to the taste before you appreciate them. And it’s easier if they taste better than the processed food you are used to.
We are more tempted to eat healthy food when it is well-presented. It makes us think we are in an expensive restaurant and they are attending to us like we are royalties.
And when we finally get to eat this well-prepared and presented meal, our taste bud thanks us for the experience.
But most times, we do not even give these healthy meals a chance because of our conception of what healthy meals taste like…bland, tasteless and too serious to be food.
So, we pass up on what would have enriched our body with mega nutrients, and settle for empty calories – unhealthy foods.
These unhealthy meals may seem insignificant, but they do cause us a lot in our everyday lives, from excessive weight gain to heart troubles and chronic diseases.
This is why we must learn to prepare appealing healthy food in such a way that unhealthy meals would not get a second glance from us.
How To Cook Appealing Healthy Food?
The first thing that would make healthy food taste better is the quality of the ingredients we use. Using fresh foods is the best thing you can do to improve their taste and sight.
The second thing is, using the right seasoning and spices to enhance the flavor before and during cooking.
Here are a few tips that will help you make your healthy meals more appealing:
1. Add More Flavor To Your Healthy Meals
The flavor of the food is what gives it that wonderful aroma which triggers your senses that something good is going on in the kitchen and you want to check it out.
When cooking healthy meals, the salt content should be on our minds. Excess salt isn’t something you want to taste all through the meal.
It might taste good with a bag of chips, but not with healthy food. So, pipe down with the salt addition.
If you are going to use canned products, make sure you drain the water entirely as some canned products have high salt contents used to preserve the products.
Using fresh food, fruits and vegetables are far better.
When using your spices, make sure it’s not too much or too little, just moderate. Although you can add more if you are making a hot sauce or a dish with pepper as its signatory.
You could also add fresh herbs such as cilantro for extra flavoring.
If you remember, you can try adding fresh lemon juice to make the food’s aroma fill the entire house and cause everyone to salivate and wait eagerly for it to be served.
2. Experiment With New Herbs And Spices
Don’t get cut up using the same herb and spices when you have an array of them to choose from. You can try herbs that you’ve never used in cooking before to give your meal a better taste.
Rub the spices and herbs on chicken, meat or fish and marinate them. This allows the flavor to go deep inside.
Herbs like curry powder, star anise, cinnamon, grated ginger, herbs de province, scallions, etc. can be used to marinate. They can also make soups, stews, and veggies taste great.
3. Serving The Food Matters Too
The way the food is served is what encourages people to want to join in the feast.
If you are trying to get your family to eat healthy with you, which of course makes your job easier, then you have to care how you make them perceive healthy foods.
Serving the food hot is the first step to making it look appealing; no one likes a cold meal.
Also, the portion of the food you serve matters. Making it small will make it look poised and appealing, just like they do at expensive restaurants.
Adding too much will make it look like you are trying to force the food down their throats.
Add fresh fruits to whatever you plan to serve as desserts to make it look attractive.
4. Marinate The Food Before Cooking It
One of the best ways to get something great out of your lean protein is by marinating them before cooking. This will help bring out its flavor as well as making them tender.
To marinate, you will need to use an acidic food such as yogurt, lemon, or vinegar to make them tender to make the seasons you are going to add easily penetrate.
The next thing is to rub in the seasonings you have decided to use. It could be pepper, salt, garlic, oil, yogurt, cinnamon, or anything you fancy.
When you are done rubbing it, seal it tightly and place it in your refrigerator for 30 minutes or till whenever you feel like making use of it. During the time it spends in the fridge, it will fully soak in the ingredients.
The more herbs you use, the better flavorful your food will turn out to be. You could also add herbs such as onion, sliced lemon, garlic, etc. to fish and poultry when poaching. It adds flavor to the cooking.
When it comes to making appealing healthy food, don’t forget about these key “ingredients”: salt, herbs, and spices content, marinating, and plating.