*This is a collaborative post.
When it comes to food, we all want the best ingredients we can possibly provide ourselves with. This is for a whole host of reasons. Good quality food tends to be better for your health and wellbeing – it is less processed, has more nutrients packed in and tends to have lower levels of added saturated fat, salts and sugars.
When it comes to taste, high quality foods tend to make much better meals too. They’re fresher, more flavoursome and will make your recipes really stand out. But how should you go about getting the best possible foods for your day to day cooking? Here are some suggestions that should help you along the way.
Buy Local Where Possible
Food that has travelled a shorter distance tends to be fresher and better to work with. For this reason, you should try to shop with local suppliers when possible, in order to get the best ingredients available. This could be picking your fruit and veg up at a local farmer’s market, buying your eggs from a local farm that can provide eggs laid on the same day or choosing food from stores that specialise in local produce. You’ll immediately notice the difference when you taste it.
Choose Seasonal Fruit and Veg
We’re used to living in a society where all sorts of foods are available year round. This is because we import from overseas and are consequently able to have oranges in winter, sprouts in the summer, pumpkin in the spring and lettuce in the Autumn. This is fine to satiate a craving for something in particular, but it tends to be much better to opt for seasonal foods wherever possible. You’ll notice that most quality restaurants and other eateries will change their menus according to the seasons. Follow suit in your own home.
Use Reliable Fishmongers and Butchers
If you eat fish or meat, try to shop with a quality, reliable online fishmonger or butcher. Sure, you can buy meat in your local supermarket, but when you shop with a fishmonger or butcher, you’re shopping with a specialist. They’ll have access to the freshest and best quality sources of fish and meat possible. You can choose specific cuts and they’ll be able to carry out specific actions to prep the food for you, such as deboning or filleting the fish.
Sure, not everyone is into organic food. Some people feel that it is basically the same produce with a higher price tag. But organic foods can actually be much higher quality and the taste reflects this. Organic produce is created through farming practices that only use natural substances. This means that the food will be free of any artificial chemicals, hormones, antibiotics and other additives.
Use Authentic Spices
If you travel, use this as an opportunity to pick up some authentic spices. Spices such as turmeric or saffron can be higher quality or simply lower cost in the countries where they are grown or sourced. Just make sure to check customs regulations in regards to transporting food between countries.
Hopefully, some of the information above should help you to get your hands on some of the best ingredients. Give them a go when you’re next shopping.