We are adding a new category here at Just Trim The Ends. There are many flavors in life and we want to showcase them each week with various meals, drinks, and beyond. We all know food goes through trends just like fashion and it’s a good reminder of how to stay healthy even when we cheat. There are times we see a picture of a dish online or in a restaurant and try to recreate it but it never seems to quite come out the same way or taste the same way. A lot of the times most restaurants add more salt and butter than necessary which equals more flavor to us. It may taste great but it may be too much for our diets or lifestyles.
The first entry is about a staple that a lot of people eat and keep stocked frozen in the freezer. Chicken. We can cook it a million different ways and it will taste different every time. Recently, I had someone tell me they had no clue how to cook chicken and make it the same way each time with a different starch or vegetable. How many times can we eat chicken and rice and be happy? For me? Once. I invite you to branch out in how you season, and if you aren’t sure, try a new flavor. Smelling a new spice is a good way to determine if you will enjoy the taste. The other good news? Dried spices you can buy anywhere. Don’t feel as if you have to spend top dollar for something like oregano that can be purchased somewhere less expensively. The only way to get truly fresh oregano is to grow it yourself on your windowsill or garden. Not everyone has the time or patience for that. Another great location to buy unique spices or sauces is Whole Foods or Trader Joes. If you are looking to try Asian style cuisine, look for lower sodium (lower salt) options. There will still be the same powerful flavors but less salt which is good for you overall.
If you are looking to simply season something as small as a single serving of chicken to a whole bird, you only need a few basic items. I prefer to use fresh natural salt. I was lucky enough to get a few bags from a recent trip my brother took to Bonaire. It is flavorful and you don’t need much to enhance the flavor of your cooking. I use it in everything, even my baking. The next spice is black pepper, and lastly basil. You may not like the taste of basil or think it will make the food taste more “Italian” but I assure you it will not. The basil helps balance and give it a flavor boost without transporting your flavor to another location. If you are feeling frisky, add some rough or finely chopped onions (white or yellow medallions) with finely chopped green peppers. This base can be done baked, grilled, stir fried, roasted – whatever. If you aren’t a fan of onions, don’t worry, you don’t have to add it – it’s just a suggestion as far as flavor goes. It’s the easiest base with this kind of meat that’s quick, easy and doesn’t create a huge mess just trying to get something on the table for dinner.
If you are feeling adventurous when it comes to preparation, try something a bit more complicated. Chicken Marsala? Home made chicken nuggets? Maybe a different kind of curry? There are so many options that I am sure you are interested in trying and I hope you do try them. The best way to get healthy and stay healthy is learning how to cook, and learning the importance of cooking at home. You are more conscience of what goes into your mouth when you are preparing it than scanning a menu and placing an order. You also will save more money too.