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1.Your burned your meat dish.
No matter how great a cook you are, we all fail sometimes. What do do in a situation when you meant to cook something original with meat, for instance, broiled chicken breast, but didn’t watch over your process, and burned the chicken? Don’t worry, there are ways to salvage almost any ruined dish. For instance, if you burned your chicken, scrape off the burned part, and use cumin or curry to neutralize and mask the smell of burning. Sour cream and butter will help to soften the meat. And if you overcooked your ribs–add some BBQ sauce, and your burnt crust will turn from a bug into a feature!
2. Your cake or cupcakes fell apart.
Your beautiful cake you cast kitchen spells over for three hours falls apart. Not to worry! Serve it in parfait cups with heavy cream, fresh berries, and a mint leaf, and it will look like you actually meant it to be artfully messy.
3. Overly Salted Soup
Just don’t add extra water, or you can ruin things further. Add more vegetables–they will absorb extra salt. Add crops–they will do the same but even better. If your soup is meant to be creamy–add a little more milk not to make it overly heavy. Or more unsalted broth.
4. The meat you fry is too stiff.
That happens sometimes to the best of meat stores. That piggy was just too old, or maybe that cow worked out. But the meat is stiff, and has all the fine texture of a rubber sole. There are several ways to make it more chewable. Vinegar, lemon juice, or any fruit acids will make the meat softer, so you may want to soak it a little. Any meat cooked this way would be perfect for salads, for example, this chicken salad with grapes.
5. You burned your veggies.
Here’s a good way of turning that bug into a feature. Pretend you’re actually… grilling them, and a little burn is just fine. If you add herbs, and olive oil as a dressing, you may just want to burn your veggies next time too!
6. You’ve added too much pepper.
Some like it hot, but you weren’t planning on your hand slipping and dumping that much pepper into your dish. Worry not, just make this dish an ingredient in another dish. If you went way to generous on pepper with your meat–add it to a salad later, for example, this 7 layer salad. Its rich creamy dressing will take off the bite of the pepper.
7. Your cake is underbaked.
Crusty on the outside, and underbaked on the inside? And you don’t want it to become even more crusty, but wouldn’t like to eat unbaked batter from the middle as well? Microwaving this little puppy for a few minutes will solve this problem.
8. When Your Liver Is Overdone
We all know that the best thing about liver is when it’s soft and tender. But yours somehow turned out dry and sandy. You can remedy this situation as well. Simply let the liver stew in cream or sour cream for a few minutes. Besides softening, it will acquire an excellent creamy flavor.
9. Dough Thickness
You followed a recipe to a point, but somehow the dough is off the mark. It sticks to your fingers when it shouldn’t, or looks like a rock where it should be light and fluffy? The trick here is the kind of flour used. Recipes often don’t mention it, and yet, it matters a lot. To make the dough stiffer, just add a bit more flour. To make it softer–use ice water, or ice-cold milk. Later you can let the dough rest, and get to room temperature.
10. Your meat is too dry and overdone.
If this happened to you, and you want to make your meat taste juicy again, this kind of meat will be perfect for warm salads with plenty of juicy vegetables and oil, also onions, because onions bring out the juice.
11. Your mashed potatoes are too watery.
You made your mash, and it just looks bland. You can fix this by putting it over a low heat, and letting the excess liquid steam out. Another way is adding a bit more potato starch to it.
12. Your cake cream filling is to watery.
This can happen for several reasons. If you used a heat-up cream version, just add a bit more flower, and let it simmer longer till all the flour soaks up the liquid. If you used such ingredients as butter or mascarpone cheese, refrigerating your filling will make it much thicker.
13. Lumpy Porridge
A solution to lumps in your porridge is simple enough. Just sift it, and you’ll get your desired smooth texture.
14. There’s something lacking in your salad dressing.
Salad dressing is supposed to add flavor, not spoil it. So if you feel that yours is lacking, here are a few ways to improve it. Mostly what you need is to balance out the flavor. Add capers, soy sauce, or pickles if it’s too sweet. If it’s too sour, adding a little honey will fix things. And a too-salty dressing can benefit from a bit more oil and green herbs, or maybe even yoghurt, if it’s suitable in your salad.
15. Your cake is stuck to the bottom of the baking dish.
It’s perfect, it’s beautiful, but it’s stuck, and you can’t remove it from the pan or dish without ruining it. Try placing it in a larger pan with cold water, and use a spatula to carefully detach it from the surface.
16. How to Save a Burned Cake
You aimed for a golden brown crust, but it’s much more brown than it’s golden? It can still be fixed. Take a sift, and grate it over the crust, removing the very top layer. Afterwards you can simply brush it off like it never happened.
17. Your cream soup is too watery.
No problems, actually. To salvage the smooth texture of a cream soup, you can add well-cooked and blended lentils, potatoes, or pumpkin, depending on what kind of soup you’re making.
18. Your meat is too hard and stiff.
Regular cola is a solution for many things. My mom uses it for upset stomachs, and I use it to soften hard, stiff meat. No, you won’t have your meat taste like pepsi afterwards if you let it take a pepsi soak for a couple of hours.
19. When Fried Fish Is Too Flaky
This often happens, especially if you bought frozen fish. You fry your cod, and it just flakes apart. Still tastes good, but doesn’t really look awesome. In this case, you can serve it with any white creamy sauce like a fish stew.
20. When You Add Too Much Salt to Fish
Stewing your fish with tomatoes or sour cream will help to absorb the extra salt from the meat. Besides, you will add a nice flavor touch to it.
21. You burned your porridge.
You wanted a nice breakfast, but was too sleepy, and it got burned. Even after you removed the unspoiled part, it still smells smoky. Unless you’re a fan of the smell, here’s what to do: add some butter, and/or milk, and let it soak, then remove the excess liquid. The smell will be gone.
22. When Your Chicken Turns Out Too Dry
It’s actually really easy to overdo chicken. If it’s not soft and tender, you still can salvage it. Serving it with any savory sauce is your solution. For example, mix white wine, stock, herbs and greens, salt and pepper, carve the chicken, and pour the sauce over the meat. That should do the trick.
23. Your sauce or gravy is too watery.
You could add starch, but it may turn the flavor a little bland. Try adding cooked and blended lentils, rice, or boiled veggies to the mix, to give it more texture.
24. Your sauce curdled.
The main reason why this happens is inadequate balance of liquids and fats in the mix. You can even that out by adding whatever is missing. If it’s cream that’s curdled, you can blend the sauce to break the lumps. Oh, and when there’s a possibility of curdling, try not to boil the sauce, only let it simmer.
25. Your vegetables are overdone.
If you wanted crispy veggies, but instead they remind you of wet noodles, don’t hurry to throw them in the trash can. You can blend them in a mixer, add spices, a bit of broth or cream, and have a fine vegetable soup.
26. Your cake is too dry.
This one is simple. Mix in a bit of fruit juice, wine or sweet liqueur, such as rum or whiskey. Or you can use a mix of coffee and liqueur. Or go for a liqueur-free option. Sprinkle the liquid over the cake generously, and let it cool for a while. And voila, it’s saved, and might even be better than before.
I hope you find any of those tricks useful, and turn any spoiled food situation into a chance to be creative. Have any other food-salvaging solutions? Please share them in comments!