Shereen Pavlides' Quickest Ways To Elevate Your Cooking - Exclusive

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On Shereen Pavlides' TikTok channel, she has a saying: "Because you're fancy." It's also the tagline for her upcoming May 2023 cookbook, "Cooking With Shereen: Rockstar Dinners!" If you've ever watched Pavlides on TikTok, you'll know that she's all about cooking from scratch, but with an elevated, fancy touch.

However, for some home cooks, fancy just isn't in the culinary vocabulary — and for those home cooks, Pavlides has two very easy ways for you to elevate your cooking: fresh herbs and a pretty serving platter.

"Something so simple as an herb truly elevates a dish. It makes it gourmet. When people are cooking and they're a little frazzled, they tend to forget about that," Shereen Pavlides told Mashed in a recent exclusive interview. "... It makes a difference. It's this fresh element that's beautiful. It elevates the flavor of freshness in the dish." She often opts for a little parsley, and if you're worried that cleaning, chopping, and placing parsley is going to get pushed to the side when you're just trying to get dinner on the table, she has a hack for that, too.

Fancy made easy

"When you come home from the grocery store, wash the herbs first. Store them and get them prepped [so] they're already done. They're washed and cleaned. If you don't wash them from the start, you're never going to use them because you'll be overwhelmed by making the dish, and that's one more thing you skip," Shereen Pavlides told us. If your herbs are prepped and ready to go, though, you're that much more likely to use them for that extra fancy touch when your dish needs one.

"Then, put [your dish] on a pretty [serving dish]," Pavlides continued. "I buy serving platters, and every night, I'll put whatever dish I've made onto these platters and put them on the kitchen island. I always garnish [it] with fresh herbs, and it looks beautiful. If I took those two elements away — the serving dish and the parsley — it would be flat. Something that simple can make it fancy."

Check out Shereen Pavlides' new cookbook, "Cooking With Shereen: Rockstar Dinners!" and follow Pavlides on TikTok at @cookingwithshereen.