You’ve Had the Food Temperatures All Wrong

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You may think otherwise, but you would think wrongly:

Salads should come warm.

Or at least room temperature. And yes, I count in the “salad” category lettuce-based salads and bean salads and fruit salads and even nasty mayonnaise-based salads with chicken and tuna and potatoes, which I won’t eat anyway.

In fact, most food tastes best at room temperature or warmer. Cheese and fruit, for two examples. Yes, you store them in the refrigerator to help them last a bit longer, but you should remove them from said refrigerator and let them warm to room temperature before you serve them to people—including yourself.

Cold food just tastes cold. The flavor hides under the temperature. Yuck.

Sure, go with cold if you aim for chilled and crisp, but I venture these characteristics only help celery and iceberg lettuce. Otherwise, cold and crisp describe ice.

And ice is not food.

Scrambled eggs taste best lukewarm as well, though I figure fewer people will come around to this notion. On the dry end of the spectrum, slightly crispy, and nearing room temperature make for the perfect scrambled egg.

While we hold breakfast food in mind, let me assert that bacon tastes better only slightly warm as well. Sausage, too.

And when lukewarm doesn't best serve the dish—and given that one should never go cold—the dish requires true heat to enhance its flavor. In these cases, the food then should come whiskery hot, with tendrils of steam lifting off the surface of the soup or the pork chop or the roasted chicken.

Hungry, anyone?