Adding a little fat and salt is a great way to add flavor to your supper club menus. It just isn’t the healthiest thing for you. In working with some great scientists and chefs at Kraft I have learned a few tricks. For me the key is cutting back and finding healthier alternatives.
A great example of this is a “Beurre blanc” sauce that I make. The traditional French recipe calls for adding butter at multiple stages of preparation. The butter gives the sauce the rich, creamy flavor and mouth-feel. They key is the addition of butter at final stage as a thickener.
What I do is replace butter with olive oil to sauté the shallot and garlic at the first stage. In the final stage instead of using butter I use cornstarch as a thickener. The starch system is not at flavorful as butter and delivers a wonderful mouth feel. The net result is that sauce is lighter and really good.
In the 1990’s my wife was trying to cut back on the fat our children consumed so they were brought up eating Philadelphia “Free” no fat cream cheese. One day our daughter came back from a sleepover at girlfriend’s house and she was irate. Her friend’s mom served her real cream cheese with her bagel and our daughter realized that mom had been giving her the crappy “Free” product for years. She got over it and “Free” disappeared from the market.
One great way to reduce the salt in a dish and still have it pop with flavor is to add a little capsicum. Adding pepper, white pepper, cayenne or even a little Tabasco really helps reduced salt dishes. Capsicum is the component in pepper that delivers the heat. A little spice/heat goes a long way to replace salt’s impact on a dish.
The attached recipe uses my version of a “Beurre blanc” sauce that uses no butter and wasabi powder. The heat (capsicum) in the wasabi allows you to cut back on the salt and still deliver a very flavorful dish.
Fat and salt deliver flavor. Moderation is the key to healthiness. There are ways to deliver great flavor to your supper club menu. The tricks outlined above are ways to make your dishes healthier.
If you enjoy this blog and similar other stories/supper club lessons subscribe to get future blogs at www.impromptufridaynights.com/blog and be on the look out for my book Impromptu Friday Nights a Guide to Supper Clubs due out from Morgan James Publishing on January 30, 2018