"Nowadays we are so used to getting food pre-prepared, ready to eat,that we hardly consider how it gets there.You order it over the phone or internet, or you open the tin and warm it through, or you take it out of the freezer and microwave it, and hey presto or “ding” should I say, there it is on your plate ready to eat. Even recipes are pretty foolproof, you could probably go from start to finish without tasting and the end result would be fine.
But that is not what we are after here. No, we are constructing something from scratch, so taste everything all the way through. Watch how the flavours change, how the stock overpowers everything at the beginning but then mellows during cooking as the other flavours develop and come through.
And think about what you’re tasting, is it nice? Is it what you expected? Does it need something else? If it does you’ll know, you may not know what, but you will know that the taste is not quite right. Here is where I experiment. I’ll take a spoonful and add a little bit to that spoonful, say yoghurt perhaps or lemon juice or some feta cheese. Then I’ll taste that and if it works – fine, if not I still have my soup. This way you’ll learn what works and what doesn’t, and gather a whole lot of ideas that work (or don’t) for the future."
I have become a bit obsessed with tv chefs lately. Or not them as such but their behaviour. To be specific - whether they taste things as they go along. I have noticed that some do and some don’t. Or do they, as Nicola suggested try things but then that bit is just cut out, hmmmm . . .
Because you have to taste as you go along don’t you? I taste everything, including things I shouldn’t like food my children have touched or some more disgusting things (the cheese sandwich found in a skip (dumpster), comes to mind but is best forgotten!). But does everybody, have recipes become so precise and predictable that tasting and adjusting are no longer required ?
I have noticed that the chefs I like to watch, from Rachel Allen through to Nigella and Jamie Oliver do taste as they go along but that is probably part of their appeal, they cook like I do or rather I would like to cook like they do. Having noticed that leaves me wondering even more about all the other chefs . . .
Perhaps I need to get out more.