Cooking Japanese tempura vegetables

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Dishes You've Never Really Stopped to Think About
Unless you're a knowledgeable cook, there are probably a few dishes that you always order without knowing how to make them, what's in them, or what exactly they are. Here's your cheat sheet: Miso is high in sodium (986 mg in one cup; 251 mg in a tablespoon), and "tempura" is Japanese for "we borrowed this dish from the Portuguese, and that's why it's so fattening" (kidding; it signifies "deep fried"). Pork belly, the popular boneless meat, has 16 times more saturated fat than pork tenderloin and 10 times more saturated fat than pork chops. You may be pleasantly surprised to discover pork belly's country cousin, bacon, in sautéed vegetables and sauces...until you realize that sweet-smoky flavor is also supremely fatty-salty. Then there's confit. French women may not get fat, but you will if confit becomes your go-to bistro dish. This meat-preserving method, which involves cooking meat submerged in its own rendered fat (or in duck fat), traditionally involves duck or goose and was justifiable in the time before refrigerators. But it's cropping up on menus these days as chefs try it with pork, lamb, turkey and even fish.


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