Yes time not thyme…We all know time is precious, but it’s also a precious ingredient. It’s something that can improve the flavour of you meals and it’s free!
It’s not just in the cooking time either. How many times have you heard people say “It tastes even better the next day!”? With most stews or sauces, giving them time lets the flavours combine and develop into something deeper and more subtle.
I recently made a quick Spanish bean tapas dish (don’t worry the recipe will be on here soon!) and although it was being eaten that evening by adding the beans when the sauce was cooked out by letting it go cold then reheating about an hour later the sauce had developed a much better flavour and the beans had had time to soak up the sauce.
That short amount of time gave a huge payoff when eating the finished dish.
Let’s get complicated…
Complexity is what it’s all about. When a wet dish with several ingredients is given time, the flavours meld together and become more complex and yet fully rounded the layers of flavour becoming more blurred while still being individually noticeable.
I have a little trick with curries in particular chicken and seafood, what I do is make my curry sauce and let it go stone cold. Then I add the raw meat and pop the pan in the fridge and use the sauce as a marinade. Hours later you simply heat up the curry until the raw ingredients have cooked through. Not only does this improve the depth of flavour, it is also a very handy technique if you have guests coming over.
So why not give it a try? Next time you are making a pasta sauce, chilli, curry or stew try letting it go cold then reheat and see if you notice a distinct difference over how the recipe usually turns out…
I would love to know if you tried this method, please remember to let me know in the comments below.