How to Season Your Food and Build Flavor – FlavCity with Bobby
When it comes to cooking there are certain
rules if you want to achieve deliciousness.
Considering I’m a mamma’s boy, I always follow
Today I’m going to show you the four flavors
of cooking that if you adhere to, you are
going to build ultimate flavor every single
They are, salty, sweet, spicy and sour and
I thought the best dish to display that today
is my homemade 30 minute marinara sauce.
It make my Aunt Nona in the Northern part
of the suburbs of Chicago, so proud.
Let’s do it.
In the pan I have onions, garlic, carrots,
and celery cooking over medium heat with a
couple shots of olive oil.
Let’s talk about salt, 1/2 tsp pinch of Kosher
What salt does is actually bring out the natural
flavor of the food even more.
There’s a reason why restaurant food tastes
so good, it’s because they season aggressively.
When you watch me cook a big fat juicy steak
and I season aggressively with salt on each
That’s because the salt makes the meat taste
Salt is flavor, with out it your food is going
to be bland.
Don’t make me come after you now.
Now another way to bring salt to the party
is Parmesan cheese or bacon.
Imagine finishing pasta with some Parmesan
reggiano or taking some crispy bacon.
That crunchy salty bite is going to bring
so much flavor.
Now add about a teaspoon of dried thyme and
a small pinch of chili peppers, or red chili
Now the pepper flakes is where spice comes
Spice works really well when it compliments
some sweetness in a dish.
Plus it really opens up your appetites, AKA
get’s your flavor jets going.
Another way to bring heat to the party is
by finely slicing some chili peppers and tossing
them in a salad, or if you’re making my fried
rice recipe, a little squirt of sriracha or
chili sauce goes a long way.
For my sauce I’m going to add two heaping
tablespoons of tomato paste.
Now I actually like to cook the tomato paste
for a couple minutes.
I think that just intensifies the flavors
of the tomato even more and it gives it such
a depth of flavor.
Now for flavor number three, we’re talking
acid or sour.
For this recipe some red wine will do the
When I add some wine to this pan I’m going
to reduce it by half and the flavor is going
to get so intensified and really just create
a flavor base.
Now acid is really good because it brings
brightness to the party, and it really cuts
through the richness of some dishes.
If you have a braise or a stew, a little bit
of lemon juice in there is really going to
cut through the richness and make the flavor
bright and pop.
You guys know from watching culinary competition
shows acid is so important.
Your dish was lacking seasoning and was screaming
for some acid, and for that reason you’re
A little bit of vinegar or acid is great for
a salad dressing because they’re mostly made
of oil which is super rich.
If you balance it out with one part acid or
vinegar, it totally cuts through that and
makes a perfect marriage.
Now let’s add a can of pureed tomatoes to
this which brings us back to our friend salt.
Those tomatoes are really, really bland, you’ll
need a good teaspoon more of salt.
That’s really good, but believe it or not
it can use one more pinch of salt.
That’s the only way we know, by tasting and
That’s how we get the perfect final dish.
Now for the fourth layer of flavor, we’re
going to add honey.
Honey is that nice sweet kiss that’s going
to round out the flavor perfectly.
Especially for my marinara sauce because tomatoes
are very acidify and the honey helps cut through
that acid perfectly.
Another way to add sweetness is Molasses.
I combine molasses and honey in my BBQ sauce
that I put on my Honey Bourbon BBQ Slider,
it is literally an award winning burger and
The sauce has been cooking for 30 minutes
it should be done, but we do have to taste
it one last time.
It’s got great flavor, every thing is nice
and rounded but there is this elusive fifth
element of flavor.
That my friends is called umami and that is
Japanese for deliciousness.
Foods that have umami are tomatoes and there
is tons of tomatoes in here.
It’s just this rich earthy flavor, other foods
that have it are mushrooms, soy sauce, Parmesan
cheese and obviously tomatoes.
All right that’s it.
The tomato sauce is done of course if you
want to build the ultimate dish, you’ve got
to add some texture or some crunch but that
would be the sixth sense.
That would be two Bruce Willis references
in one video which is way too much.
As Alton Brown always says “That’s another
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See you next week.