Michael Symon's Eight Must-Have Ingredients

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Michael Symon's Eight Must-Have Ingredients
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Michael Symon's Eight Must-Have Ingredients

From butter to horseradish, Chef Michael Symon shares which ingredients he can't live without. These eight items will help enhance flavors in your favorite meals.

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According to Symon, butter is great to finish with. "I love how it will smooth out a dish [or] round out a sauce," he explains. "If you are cooking seafood or meat, it is great to melt in the pan and baste with it."

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Michael insists that you can't make food taste delicious without the help of salt.

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Parmesan Cheese

"It has that nice salty, briny deliciousness to it that uplifts a dish," he offers.

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"Who doesn’t love bacon?" asks Chef Symon. "It just makes everything a bit tastier. I put it in sauces all the time. It is just a good flavor bumper."

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Extra Virgin Olive Oil

Michael uses olive oil in quick sauces and can whip up a great pasta dish with a little EVOO, San Marzano tomatoes, garlic and onion.

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Of garlic, Symon recalls, "I grew up with it, my mom cooked with it a lot. It is just something I enjoy."

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"There is really nothing that doesn’t taste better with lemons," Symon explains. "I put [them] in almost everything that I cook. I use the zest and the juice; it is bright and a palate opener and enhancer."

"I hate, hate, hate flat food!"

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"I love it for the same reason as lemon, it opens and brightens everything up!" says Symon.

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Just as a fashion designer swears by satin and silk, a culinary expert must be armed by his or her ingredients to make magic in the kitchen. Chef Michael Symon of The Chew and Iron Chef is no exception.

The ingredients Symon can't live without range from the classic to the bold. While most people can agree that salt is an excellent flavor-enhancer, many may not utilize horseradish for the same purpose. And although bacon is ever-popular, it might not make the cut on other chefs' lists.

Check out the slideshow above for Chef Michael Symon's eight must-have ingredients in the kitchen and use them to spice up your own cooking!

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