Inventions have spurred modern culinary discoveries

It is easy to take for granted the many convenient pre-cooked food options available in the grocery store freezers and shelves. But, how many of these options would be missing without the inventions of the following items:

  • Flash Freezing
  • Freeze Drying
  • Microwaving
  • Vacuum Sealing
  • Crock Pots

These discoveries have made it easier on working mothers and working singles alike, by making it possible to cut cook times in half. Thanks to modern culinary discoveries it is possible to work all day and still come home to have a nice pot roast or lasagna dinner without spending all day in the kitchen.

Culinary discoveries are not limited to the techniques in which foods are cooked, processed and stored. There have also been modern developments in seasonings and flavor enhancers. These developments have taken the flavors and textures of pre-cooked foods from bland cardboard textured pizzas to gourmet pastas and organic pizzas. Some of the modern flavoring discoveries are:

  • MSG - was one of the first food flavor enhancers and it is still widely used as an ingredient to bring out the natural flavors in pre-packaged foods.
  • Maltodextrin - without this discovery to aid in the binding of fats, freeze drying may not have come into production.
  • Sulphites - discovered to control microbial growth in fermented foods and beverages. Although wine makers have been using sulphites for over 200 years, these have expanded into modern packaged foods lengthening shelf life and food options.

There are pros and cons to these additives, but these modern miracles have definitely changed the way people eat in the modern world.

How about the tools we use in the kitchen every day?  For the caveman, the simple cooking pot would have been a modern marvel. Now, there are non-stick pots and skillets for cooks to make their sauces in without having to chisel out the burnt on remnants after their fabulous meal. Even this invention has had its remodels and improvements to keep the coating from scraping off into the food that is being cooked in it. Don't forget about the food processor and the blender. These two devices have saved many a cook from slaving away for hours chopping and mincing ingredients for their salsas, and soups. Even the basic vegetable peeler has been remodeled and updated with more ergonomic handles and more proficient blades to make the cooking experience more pleasurable.

Julia Child helped to expose the average housewife to gourmet cooking and modern culinary discoveries that have made the art of cooking more attractive. This has become abundantly clear with the number of culinary arts colleges that have surfaced over the past few decades. It is difficult to pick which culinary discoveries should be labeled as the most important, since each invention or reinvention has played its own pivotal role in bring cooking out of the shadows and into the kitchens of modern households.

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