Trying to replicate that tasty dish you had at a restaurant can prove to be an enormous challenge for the amateur cook.
Even closely following a recipe can be frustrating when the finished product just doesn't capture that burst of flavor found in the foods we eat at restaurants.
Why is that? What are these online recipes cruelly leaving out? Are we doing something wrong?
Usually, an excess of butter or salt should do the trick, but even those quick fixes don't always apply.
Fortunately, chefs online were generous to share some of their secrets from the kitchen when Redditor liberta0407 asked:
Maybe Not In Your Pantry
Think outside the box and your palate will be awakened.
"Miso paste Gochujang Doubanjiang."
"All good stuff."
"Sweet Sticky Heaven"
"BLACK GARLIC!!!!. MAKES EVERYTHING 100x better. Most of what I see here is staple pantry items. IF YOU DONT HAVE BLACK GARLIC, GET IT. Crush it into a paste and make a compound butter or anything. B L A C K G A R L I C. SWEET STICKY HEAVEN"
"Garam Masala! I find it to be sooo good in many savory dishes. I replace cumin with it whenever it's called for. It's INCREDIBLE in chili or any Asian-influenced dishes!"
People Share The 'Dirty Secrets' That Their Bosses Don't Want Customers To Know
"Sumac. Seriously, get yourself a huge bag for like $15 bucks and thank me later. It's lemony and salty, sweet and smoky and earthy and beautifully red. Sprinkle it on toast, curry, chicken, steak, tacos, devilled eggs, ice cream... Just about everything."
"You can also brew it like tea and it has an intense wild-berry flavor."
Not All Households Have It
"My mom is half Iranian, so we grew up eating sumac with our rice all the time. My parents thought it was hilarious when little me asked for some while at a friend's house, and of course they had never heard of it."
Savory Dried Herbs
"zaatar is amazing. you can have it with olive oil; dip a small piece of pita bread in olive oil then dip that same piece in a separate bowl with zaatar (obv another bowl from the storage container) for breakfast and thank me later."
For Pasta Sauce
"Bay leaves. Like salt you don't want them to be the dominant flavor in anything, but they make a night and day difference in stews, pasta sauce, you name it."
"Not a chef, but a baker. Cardamom. It's still not super common in American baked goods, and while I love cinnamon, that flavor isn't special to my palette anymore. Cardamom gives such a warm, floral scent/flavor to whatever you make, and can be paired with so many things. Treat yourself: add some cardamom and orange zest to your next batch of banana bread."
"Cardamom is incredibly inviting. The fragrance and the flavor add dimension...I really don't know how to put it into words. It's so easy to recognize even though it doesn't overpower. It's wonderful and as you said goes ups the flavor of a wide spectrum of foods. Whatever cardamom is added to,it deepens the flavor experience."
"Thyme pairs well with meat, tomatoes, and beans."
"It is the main ingredient in the classic French herb combinations Bouquet Garni and Herbes de Provence. These herb blends are frequently used to flavor meat, stews, and soups."
"Can't imagine not having thyme on my side when cooking a wide variety of dishes."
"Best life hack I ever learned was adding chicken stock cubes to cut potato's boiling in water. Seriously will up your potato game in ways you can't imagine. I've also done it with rice as well where the rice was going into something else."
A touch of the following can add so much flavor. Just careful with portions.
Queen Of Oilseeds
"roasted sesame seed oil, it adds a light nuttiness and saltiness to a dish."
Use with care though. It's amazing, but it can overtake a dish fast if you use too much."
"Chef of 25 years. Personal favorite is worcestershire sauce."
"Use it more at home than in restaurants I've worked. Such a nice umami though."
The Missing Ingredient
"Vinegar. It is often the thing that is missing when people go for more salt and spices in their cooking wondering why it doesn't taste quite as good as in a restaurant."
Just A Squeeze
"Lemon juice, enhances flavour in almost anything. Vinegar is too dominant for me."
One amateur chef who appeared to be overwhelmed by many of the options contributed something else to consider.
This person suggested, "beer," but not as a secret ingredient for use in food.
"I drink 4 or 5 before cooking and my food tastes 10 times better!" they joked.
Not my personal method, but beer is most definitely a wonderful addition to your recipes if you want to bring out the flavor of meats and vegetables. Just substitute it with water as a simmering liquid.
I'm no chef either, but beer is also an excellent baking agent that adds lightness to your favorite baked goods like banana bread, muffins, or pancakes.
Now go out and get your culinary imaginations brewing.
I love ham and pineapple on pizza.
I stand by it. It's not my favorite, but I love it.
Who wants to fight me?
Food is a serious issue.
And people are willing to squabble about all of it.
Some food mixing is a problem to many.
Redditor fizzyoranges287wanted to discuss aspects of food that some love yet haunts others. They asked:
"What’s your most controversial food opinion?"
People love their food. And they love all sorts of ingredients. Some are nonsense.
By the spoonful...Dessert Sugar GIF by Parks and RecreationGiphy
"Brown sugar is quite scrumptious on its own. I'm gonna get heart disease."
"When I make cookies it takes a lot of self control to not straight out eat right out of the brown sugar bag."
"Orange tic-tacs are not breath mints. They are candy."
"Fun fact, tic-tacs are mostly sugar but they get away with being called sugar free listing 0g of sugar in the nutritional facts because there's less than 1g per 'recommended serving.' Recommended serving size is set by the company and each tic-tac weighs less than 1g."
"I want to expose the derps that think a macaroon and a macaron are the same thing and that it's 'a matter of pronunciation.' It's not, it's really not they are two vastly different culinary creations."
"I'm Jewish and was very confused when macarons first became popular. I wondered why the go-to Passover cookie was suddenly being pronounced differently and everyone was going nuts over them. There's a great little macaron bakery near me, so I now have a tradition of bringing macarons to my family's annual Thanksgiving gatherings and macaroons to our Passover seders."
Love it More
"Cabbage is criminally underrated."
"We have cabbage salad at least once a week. Cut up a half a head of red cabbage. Mix red wine vinegarette together with dijon mustard, some lemon juice, then use a veggie peeler and top the salad with a bunch of thin strips of parmesan to your taste. Mix and add some black pepper. Easy salad that is filling and cheap, and makes a great side for savory dishes."
The Best "Non" SoupThe Office Lol GIF by BUSH'S® BeansGiphy
"The best way to eat chili is using tortilla chips as scoops."
"Depending on the type of chili. Chunky Western-style steak chili is some of the best soup in the entire world imho, but stuff like Cincinnati chili is made to be eaten on things, not by itself."
I love chili in all possible ways, Just give me...
Keep it ColdDance Party Wtf GIF by Sour Patch KidsGiphy
"I keep sour jellies in the freezer."
"This sounds like a great idea actually."
"This is controversial, but I agree with you. I’m extremely picky, but I at least try the food unlike some people. I’ve tried cilantro, onions, salsa, etc. But avocado is what gets to me most of the time with taco ingredients. The texture and taste are a bit too strong when it comes to taco ingredients. I always end up tasting the Avocado only when eating tacos."
"Boneless wings are just chicken nuggets!"
"Nah, there's usually a big difference in the quality of the chicken inside the breading. 'Nuggets' are often 'formed' ground chicken paste made into nugget shapes. Proper 'boneless wings' are actual pieces of chicken, just with the bones removed, which are then breaded and fried. They taste very different, IMO. Nothing wrong with nuggets, if you like that, but they're different foods."
"Okay this is a pretty universal opinion outside of my country, but here it's very controversial. I hate liquorice. It's disgusting honestly and i can't understand how people can eat it."
"You don't know the half of it, though. You see, I'm from the US. I moved to Norway. I hate licorice, but folks here definitely do not. I've seen licorice flavor in sausages. Freaking sausages."
"Did you know Extra sells salted licorice gum? And that licorice ice cream sauce is a thing? Do you realize how much I really want to like licorice ice cream because it looks cool? Alas, I do not. Licorice is hiding in the corners, waiting to assault my mouth with its vile flavor."
Ummm...stand disagree GIFGiphy
"I like instant mashed potatoes."
I love food. But some food is just a NO!
We are a quote heavy, self-help speeching society.
We thirst for leadership because honestly... life is dark and depressing.
How many books, speeches, essays and small "on the daily" quotes do we follow and take to heart?
Do you research every author of every quote?
You should. Or maybe you shouldn't.
Redditorcow780wanted to hear some inspiration from the worst people possible. They asked:
"Reddit, what are some great quotes by terrible people?"
Just because someone has wisdom, insight and charm doesn't mean they're kind. Evil comes in all packages.
EvilConfused Daily Show GIF by CTV Comedy ChannelGiphy
“'Do not compare yourself to others. If you do so, you are insulting yourself.'”
"'Believe in yourself, and you can accomplish anything your heart desires.'"
"- Adolf Hitler"
"'To progress again, man must remake himself. And he cannot remake himself without suffering. For he is both the marble and the sculptor. In order to uncover his true visage he must shatter his own substance with heavy blows of his hammer.'"
"In the context of self-improvement it's a great quote about pushing limits and enduring pain or discomfort in order to grow. However the author of the quote Alexis Carrel was not speaking about improvement of the individual, but of humanity as a whole through eugenics and forced sterilisation of criminals, disabled people, and other 'undesirables.'"
“'Decide that you want it more than you’re afraid of it.'- Bill Cosby"
"Great quote until you realize that with modern context it's kinda disturbing."
“'Faith moves mountains, but only knowledge moves them to the right place.' - Joseph Goebbels"
"The dude has SO many good quotes. Joseph Goebbels is what happens at the intersection of wisdom and evil."
Smileal capone inmates GIF by History UKGiphy
"'You can get far with a smile. You will get further with a smile and a gun' - Al Capone"
The villains always get the best lines.
To the FollowersKool Aid GIFGiphy
"'My whole life I have suffered from poverty and have faced many disappointments and pain, like a man is used to. That is why I want to make other people happy and want them to feel at home.' - Jim Jones"
"'Women hold up half the sky' - Mao Zedong"
"My dad used to play that song when I was little. I always thought the line was, 'if you go carrying pictures of Trem and Mao.' I always thought there was some other guy named trem that I had just not learned about in school yet."
"Mao killed 80 million of his own people and there are statues of him all over China."
"Stalin- 'A single death is a tragedy, a million deaths are a statistic.'"
"Another one by Stalin, often paraphrased as 'It's not who votes that counts, it's who counts the votes.'"
"'I consider it completely unimportant who in the party will vote, or how; but what is extraordinarily important is this—who will count the votes, and how.'"
"'Expectations ruin relationships' - Michelle Duggar"
"This one stuck with me and then I started to notice the most unhappy people I know are the ones with the most or highest expectations of others."
"American hero worship is the worst thing. We have to lie about all, of amerikan history because our little snowflakes would melt learning the truth in school. Once you acknowledge that everyone is flawed, it's easier to accept reality."
Geminidavid fincher fbi GIF by NETFLIXGiphy
"'You gotta remember, if we're all God then we're all the Devil too.' -Charles Manson"
Even the worst and most of us is can be brilliant. That's why evil can be hard to catch and easy to follow.
"Thoughts and prayers." Those are the two main things doled out immediately in the wake of a mass shooting in the United States.
Let's face it. While platitudes are all well and good, they are merely a contrivance to fill the silence that has stunned devastated communities.
As many American citizens call for stricter gun legislation, there are just as many who advocate for their right to the Second Amendment.
How has this become the polarizing issue in the country while many other parts of the world maintain peace–presumably due to citizens not having the right to bear arms?
Genuinely curious to hear from a specific demographic, Redditor Wonderful-Wash-2145 asked:
"To the Americans who don’t agree with changing the gun laws? Why?"
People shared their informed opinions in great detail.
When Gun Advocates Lack Common Sense Or Knowledge
"I live in a state, California, which has all of the gun laws that people are asking for and then some. While our gun violence isn't as high as a lot of other states, it was already rapidly trending downward before our biggest laws, like our 'Assault Weapons' ban passed. And we've still had our share of mass shootings. With the laws in place it's easy to see why they're ineffective."
"Assault Weapons ban? Because the only thing separating an AR-15 from any other semi-automatic rifle are ergonomic features like the stock and grip, AR-15s and similar rifles are still sold here, just with those features swapped out for less comfortable alternatives."
"'Universal' Background Checks? What people don't realize is that every gun store around the country has to run background checks on buyers already, 'Universal' means that private sellers have to do that too. How is that accomplished? The buyer and seller have to meet at a gun shop so the gun shop can run the background check. The problem is, there's nothing to stop someone from just NOT doing that. If you want to sell a gun to your best friend, there's nothing stopping you from doing it in the comfort of your own home, no paperwork required. So universal background checks aren't universal, they're voluntary but if people called them voluntary background checks, it would be too self-evident that they're not much of a solution."
"Before people say 'Well one state having those laws is ineffective because people can just buy from another state.' No, that's not legal. You can only legally buy a gun in the state in which you reside. Do people still do it? Yes, people break the law by buying from private sellers, which more laws wouldn't prevent."
"Americans buy 15 Million guns a year from dealers, who knows how many are purchased from private sellers. Countries like Australia where gun control has been effective only had a few million guns in their whole country, much less the hundreds of millions that the US has."
"The reason gun nuts oppose 'common sense' gun control is that a prerequisite for common sense is common knowledge, and it's rare for gun control advocates to have knowledge of both firearms and the laws that currently regulate them in pro gun control states like California."
In The Absence Of Enforcement
"And, a lot of the existing laws aren't enforced. Domestic abusers are supposed to surrender their arms are rarely do and the police rarely follow up, for example. I saw a thread yesterday where someone cited 27,000 known firearms holders that were illegal that law enforcement didn't do anything about."
Weak arguments were also presented.
"So why not make guns have to be registered the way cars are? If I want to sell my car to my friend, I have to fill out paperwork to tell the state that the title for that car is being transferred to my friend. Can’t we do the same for guns?"
A Salesman's Statistic
"I sell auto insurance. Do you know how often someone comes in to insure a vehicle they purchased but never put into their name? Literally like 5 times a weeks if not more."
"A big problem with anything regulatory is how ripe it is to be exploited for the person doing the regulations. A lot of gun control measures have to be enforced by someone and if that person is racist, guess who gets the regulations enforced against them more often? It's still a policing issue when at the core a large group of people simply can't trust the police, and now this is putting both parties in an even more dangerous position."
The thread continued sparking a lengthy discussion about gun culture.
A Slippery Slope
"I think one of the concerns that people are thinking about is that the 'gun reform' movement is a stomach that can't ever be satisfied, meaning, they are always going to ask for more ways to reform guns until eventually people won't get to have any. And I think people who are against gun reform know that 'gun reform' is a slippy slope to banning guns outright and overturning the 2nd Amendment."
What's The Point?
"Governments do not care about their people. Look at selling drugs to the black community, poisoning alcohol during prohibition, anti-privacy laws, I could go on but there's no need to fill paragraphs of these things. And we're supposed to hand over our tools of self-defense and expect the government to protect us? The same government that just sat there outside the Uvalde school?"
"And how are they going to get guns out of the hands of criminals anyway? A good chunk of these shooters are already using guns they can't legally own. If they try to completely get rid of firearms through a 'war on guns' in the same way they've waged a 'war on drugs' for decades, then the amount of illegal, untraceable firearms is only going to go up with every passing decade."
The Challenge Of Regulating Culture
"I think people are dancing around a core point here as well: you cannot legislate culture."
"Say we do implement just the most severe of gun laws and, miracle beyond miracles, they are 100% effective. Alright, so if I want to hurt a bunch of people en masse and guns are out of the question what do I do? What about just running a van through a crowd? What about some improvised explosive devices? Knives?"
"People think guns are the problem, but they are just a very convenient tool by which the problem expresses itself. I’ve lived in many of the so-called 'safe countries' with strong gun laws. In some respects, they are indeed safer, but it’s because the laws reflect a pre-existing cultural sentiment. This also doesn’t mean random mass violence doesn’t happen. I’m going to use Japan here because that’s a country I spent a long time in: there were the famous sarin gas attacks in 1994, also a murderer who drove a vehicle through a crowd in Akihabara (early 2000’s, I believe), and a lot more public stabbing sprees than you’d expect. One even happened a few stations down from me while living there and three little girls on their way to school died. It’s more of historical crime now, but there was also an early 1900’s mass shooting where a man, rejected by local women, decided to cut off power in his local village and systematically execute everyone in their sleep before blowing his own head off at dawn."
"The effort needs to be put into why we seem to have so many disaffected people who are so far gone that mass shootings seem like a reasonable consideration. Gun laws are ultimately just a bandaid fix and, because a good portion of the U.S. is culturally attuned to firearms in a positive way, it’s a bandaid fix that one would have to fight tooth and nail for."
"It would be an inefficient fight and even absolute victory would just result in a half measure. I oppose gun laws for precisely the same reason I oppose the war on drugs; it’s a fight that will never end just by slapping on new policies. Generations of legislators and activists will commit to it and unfathomable amounts of tax dollars will be dumped into it and in 30 years we will still be asking ourselves the same fundamental questions about our safety."
"The uncomfortable reality, at least from where I sit, is that a lasting solution is going to have to be proactive, play the long game, and be willing to figure out what has gone so wrong in our social makeup as to push people to random acts of mass violence."
"And even then, there will still just be psychopaths beyond salvaging and reincorporating into functional society."
"I also know people will want to just say 'no, more just gun laws' or 'this is all the fault of capitalism' etc. etc. but I think those who hold these simplistic, one-note positions are fooling themselves into thinking that this is as easy as identifying the sole 'big bad thing' and then destroying it. As a historian, I can guarantee you that it’s never just one factor at play.'
"I couldn’t agree more that Americans need a more proactive and preventative approach to this issue. But I think guns are just the patsy boogeyman that is simple and comfortable to place blame on. If Americans choose to fight that fight, then so be it, but I maintain that it will be long and ineffectual. In the mean time, more will die and we can all happily believe we are doing something about it."
What Is It About America?
"I get 'gun culture'. But why is the US more violent?"
I think madmen and people that commit acts of random violence are basically the same % in every country. Difference is that if a mad men in my country comes at a supermarket with a knife, he might kill one or two people but he will get tackled."
"Taking a car trough a crowd, been there. That's a different animal, is terrorism."
The thread was full of debates with pro-gun activists presenting their case and anti-gun advocates responding with arguments.
It's an endless discussion that has no resolve in sight.
So now what? What are your thoughts and suggestions that would promote a compromise or solution about gun control?
In society, the word sociopath is sometimes tossed out as an insult. Other times, it's used to describe a person in a non-malicious way but is used incorrectly.
What is a sociopath, really? Sociopaths are people who suffer from a personality disorder that leads to a lack of empathy and a conscience. These people are generally self-aware, and can mimic human emotions, but don't have any of their own.
A sociopath convention would be groups of people in which there are many sociopaths or groups of people that are entirely comprised of sociopaths.
Statistically, 1 in 25 people is a sociopath, meaning any large group could count as a sociopath convention. However, there are groups that are generally considered full of sociopaths.
Those groups were identified when Redditor GoGetEmTiger131 asked:
"What place might as well be a “sociopath convention?"
"A child pageant — the parents"
"Came here to say this exact thing, I'm so surprised this doesn't have more up votes."
"I mean statistically some of those kids must be sociopaths too, right?"
You're The Top
"sociopaths surround themselves with less powerful people, in my experience. you might find them at the top of nearly any organization, though."
"Supposedly they make up the majority of CEOs"
"I stayed at an airport hotel and the conference room was booked for "How to create a submissive Christian wife" or something like that. There was a low tooth-to-head ratio and a distinct lack of chins."
"I've read a lot of weird stuff, but this made my jaw drop a little."
We Voted Them In
"Any place where politicians gather."
"How is this so far down the list?"
"There probably isn't a larger gathering of sociopathic narcissists than a joint session of the US Congress."
"I was gonna say the DNC and RNC."
"I knew this would be at the top but honestly I think there would be more sociopaths at social media influencer convention. That or “life coaches.”"
"I knew two diagnosed sociopaths at my high school. Both became life coaches. I get heavy Manson vibes from their content."
"When a group of MLM huns get together in any location on the planet."
"Now let's talk about ways to manipulate family and friends to increase sales and even recruit your own worker bees!"
Reddit, Of Course!
"Damn roasted an entire platform"
The Whole State
"That place is so unbelievably vapid and just odd as hell. It makes Vegas seem reasonable"
"I was just gonna say Florida."
"Florida. All of it."
Become An Alpha
"We had a local "Alpha Con" here recently. I swear the promo poster was the biggest group of tools I've ever seen.
Edit : turns out it wasn't local. I am even more disgusted. Clearly I didn't do a lot of research into it."
"Literally any gathering of men where the word “Alpha” is used unironically at any point."
Learning Who You Are
"That’s, it just school."
Well, statistically, that tracks.