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Spices may help to add texture to dishes

Spices may help to add texture to dishes

Although the flavour of a dish is undoubtedly important, chefs should also think about the texture of what they are serving up to diners - and this is something culinary spices may be able to help with.

Chris O'Callaghan, head chef at Linthwaite Country House Hotel, said he tries to think about feelings and descriptive words when coming up with ingredients for meals that will really stand out, with those on his list including "crisp, snap, soft, chewy, spongy, hard, pop, melt, firm and crumble".

If you do this too, Mr O'Callaghan pointed out that it will then be possible to create surprising effects from ordinary foods, for example, a mushroom flavour that feels crisp or a strawberry recipe that gives the illusion of elasticity.

"Work on past experience or research from books and the internet," he suggested.

Herbs and spices will definitely help ingredients to work in a new way, which is one of their best qualities, according to our resident expert Chef Steve.

For instance, adding coriander, cumin and paprika to cod cakes in tomato sauce can make them taste sweet but also sharp, author the Jerusalem cookbook Yotam Ottolenghi recently wrote in the Guardian.

Related Products: Ground Coriander, Ground Cumin, Paprika

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