Are you tired of being a picky eater? Do you want to become more adventurous with your food choices? Would you like to improve yourself by embarking on a new journey?
If you want to explore the gustatory delights that the world has to offer, then you’re in luck because we have rounded up some useful tips to help you expand your picky palate. From treating your taste buds to the wonderful offerings at an international fusion restaurant to spending more time on savoring your food, there are ways to develop a taste for new or different food options.
Solutions for Selective Eaters
Being very particular with your food choices can be challenging. Some people find themselves in awkward situations because they are unfamiliar with the food that is served. Others even feel anxious about offending their hosts because they cannot eat what was prepared.
More importantly, being fastidious when it comes to your food choices may also rob you of the necessary nutrients that your body needs. Sticking to only one food group or having a few favorites may lead to malnourishment.
According to Lauren Graf, a clinical dietician at the Montefiore Health System in New York City, people who step out of their comfort zone contribute to developing a taste for healthier and nutrient-rich food. A study conducted on 500 women across the United States by the Food and Brand Lab of Cornell University found that adventurous eaters may also be healthier.
Whether it is a personal choice or has been recommended to you by concerned friends, family members, or your doctor, know that you can choose to no longer be very particular about food. Here are some of the steps to take so you can get out of the picky eater rut:
1. Make the Decision
Being picky may cause you to miss out on the best avocado salad this side of the universe or the juiciest beef ribeye that you can sink your teeth into. If you don’t want to waste another chance to enjoy sumptuous dishes, you have to decide to be more adventurous with your meals.
If you’ve been picky since childhood, then you may have to unravel the reason why you have come to this point. It may not happen overnight, nor would it be a walk in the park. But as they say, a journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step. In your case, your journey may start by taking a single bite.
Decide to try out new food today. You can choose to do it in baby steps or go big right away. However you want to go about it, it starts by making a conscious choice.
2. Study the Five Flavors
It’s salty, sour, spicy, and sweet all at the same time. Over the years, scientists have added umami as a distinct taste because it has its taste receptors, typically responding to glutamates. Umami is a Japanese term that can be translated to “pleasant savory taste.”
If you want to develop your palate, learn how to appreciate each of the flavors. Experiment on how you react to every nuance of taste. Find out how you like the food served in terms of flavor. Would a little more salt or sugar make you enjoy the dish more? Are you more willing to eat that grilled chicken if it had a little less spice?
You can use the trial-and-error method when doing your taste test. As some people would say, “Don’t knock it until you try it.”
3. Visit a Fusion Restaurant
One of the most fun ways to develop your palate is to visit different restaurants. Better yet, why not go to a fusion restaurant that serves delicious international cuisine? This way, you have the chance to sample other dishes inspired by unique global flavors.
Not all restaurants are created equal. If you want to make sure that you get a delightful dining experience, try going to a fine dining establishment that offers food prepared by culinary masters who had years of training and experience. Aside from the varied offerings in reputable fusion restaurants, you can also rely on the ingredients’ quality, the cleanliness and safety of the preparation, and the meticulous attention to detail and customer service.
4. Try a New Grocery Store
Besides trying out new restaurants, you can also try going to new grocery stores, supermarkets, and farmer’s markets. These food outlets may have other offerings that cannot be found in the store that you usually go to.
There are also specialty stores that offer specific kinds of food or ingredients from different cuisines. Have you been wondering what kimchi tastes like? Visit your local Asian store. Do you want to try kale chips or almond milk? Visit the nearby health food shop. You’d be surprised at how many other options you can have just by deciding to step out of your comfort zone.
5. Follow Food Blogs
Food blogs or vlogs can be useful instruments in encouraging picky eaters to try new things. Somehow, these food bloggers and vloggers seem to know what exactly will make you drool. Watching them cook or review different food may encourage you to give in to your cravings or sample unfamiliar dishes.
6. Cook Unfamiliar Food
You may have seen it in magazines, online, or at your friend’s last party. It may be something that you have seen on the menu of the fusion restaurant you visited with your officemates. When there’s a particular dish that has caught your attention, try to cook it at home.
Doing so will make you appreciate every ingredient that you use and the process, time, and effort you put into preparing it. You wouldn’t want your hard work to go to waste by not eating the dish you cooked, would you?
7. Savor Your Food
Instead of wolfing down that burger or downing that fruity spritzer in one gulp, why not take your time to savor your meal?
Chew your food slowly. Let the flavors burst into your mouth and tantalize your senses. Allow yourself to relish every bite and sip. Only then will you be able to appreciate and value every mouthful of food that you take.
Picky No More
When you decide to veer away from being a picky eater, stand by your word to try new food, and exert time and effort to develop your palate. These are great ways to open doors to a world of epicurean delights.