Genius $4 tip for improving in-flight meal
It's no secret airline food leaves a lot to be desired.
And worse than the questionable texture, nondescript colour and plastic packaging is the fact everything tastes really bland - which is the last thing we need on a long, boring flight.
But this top chef has a clever trick for improving the taste.
Jason Atherton, who earned a Michelin star in 2011 with his London restaurant Pollen Street Social and now runs restaurant group The Social Company, recently dished out his best travelling tips to finance newspaper Mint.
The British chef, who said he flew around 800,000 kilometres a year, admitted he tried his best to avoid the dreaded in-flight meal but if he had to, he used some advice he was given by his mate, the actor Jude Law.
"It was Law who told me to always take Tabasco on a plane," he said, referring to the pepper sauce you can buy at the supermarket for about $4 for a small bottle.
"Aeroplane food is always bland, so it's great to give it kick.
"But I just try my hardest not to eat on planes. I can normally do it up to about 12 hours. If I go to Australia, I have to eat, obviously, because it's 24 hours on a plane for me.
"I just eat the protein, drowned in Tabasco, which tastes OK - well, it tastes of Tabasco, to be honest."
It makes sense that something spicy, like Tabasco sauce, improves the flavour of food in a pressurised cabin, where our senses of taste and smell are significantly dulled.
The cabin pressure especially impacts our sensitivity to sweet and salty flavours, which can be diminished by as much as 30 per cent during a flight.
In an interview with Quartz, chef Alfred Portale from New York's Michelin-starred Gotham Bar and Grill said "aggressive seasoning" was critical when he developed recipes for Singapore Airlines.
"Simply, [we use] salt and pepper but very often we use a lot of aromatic spices, sweet spices, to jack up the flavours," Mr Portale said.
"Or we put elements on the dish, like condiments, that will jar your tastebuds."
But for those who couldn't handle airline food even with lashings of Tabasco, at least you're not alone.
Mr Atherton's mentor Gordon Ramsay recently vowed there was "no f**king way" he would eat on planes.
"I worked for airlines for 10 years, so I know where this food's been and where it goes, and how long it took before it got on board," the outspoken chef said.
Instead, he said he loaded up on fancy food at a deli or wine bar in the airport before he boarded his flight.
"A nice selection of Italian meats, a little glass of red wine, some sliced apples or pears with some parmesan cheese," he said of his preferences.
This is despite Ramsay owning a restaurant at Heathrow Airport called Plane Food, and previously working as an adviser for Singapore Airlines on their in-flight meals.