Imagine this - you have been toiling all day in the kitchen to prepare the perfect dish, your guests will be arriving any moment now and you are set to impress them with your culinary expertise. You scoop a tiny portion of the dish for a quick taste and are instantly met with disappointment! In a haste, you made a mistake that all of us have made at some point; you have over seasoned the dish. Whether it is salt, spice, or oil; excess ingredients in any dish stand out like a sore thumb. It is even more daunting when you know that you are pressed for time and there is no way you can recook the entire dish. What do you do now? Do you throw away all your efforts? Or do you not present the dish to your guests at all? Well, you do none of the above!
Over-seasoning is a mistake that almost all of us have committed and continue to do so even today. It does not mean you are a bad cook and it certainly does not mean that you need to throw away your entire dish. All you need to do is find a way to balance the flavours with each other. If the dish has been over-spiced, you try to cool it down. And if the dish has excess salt, you try to remove the salt. Here are some specific hacks that may help if you have over seasoned your dish:
Food Too Salty Or Spicy? Here are 5 Ways To Save It:
1. Add Milk/Dairy
If you have over-spiced your dish, one of the hacks that may help cool it down a little is adding some form of dairy to it. Milk, curd, or cream in particular can be used in almost all kinds of dishes to balance out the spice while also adding a touch of richness to your gravies and other dishes. Remember how we are advised to drink milk when we bite into something spicy?
2. Add Sugar:
Well, it might feel like the most logical solution to tackle spice is by having something sweet. However, this idea doesn't always cross our minds when we are met with disappointing situations like over-seasoning our dishes. This hack works even better when you are preparing certain dishes like malai kofta which has a signature sweet after taste when served in restaurants. You may use plain sugar, honey, or even tiny chunks of dates.
3. Add Mashed Potatoes:
If you have over-salted your dish, adding unseasoned mashed potatoes is one of the easiest ways to balance it out. This might result in a slightly thick gravy so make sure to add a little water to bring the consistency to your liking. Adding more potatoes will also give a nice starchy and thick taste to your dish that can complement a number of recipes.
4. Add Atta Dough:
Adding a couple of atta dough balls is another way of absorbing out all the excess salt from a dish. Make sure the atta dough that you prepare is unseasoned, and remember to take these balls out once you feel the dish has come to a balance. You can easily prepare atta dough balls by kneading a spoonful of atta and some water. Quick and easy, this hack works for almost all kinds of recipes.
5. Add More Ingredients:
What if you have over seasoned a salad? Or a pulao? You cannot add milk to a salad or add mashed potatoes to a pulao, right? Well in that case you try to dilute the spice by adding more unseasoned mass to the dish in hand. Add more neutral flavoured ingredients to the salad like spinach or lettuce. Add more unseasoned rice or veggies to the pulao and try mixing the entire dish to spread the spice amongst the new ingredients too.
No matter you are a professional or a home chef, some mistakes in the kitchen are unavoidable. Season your dish as you go and taste it frequently. Hope these tips help the next time you come across a similar situation.