Questions on understanding and manipulating the flavor of foods.

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5
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4answers
22k views

How can I quickly save a tasteless curry?

I made a curry last night for this evenings meal. The main components of it are aubergines, yoghurt, ginger, tumeric, cumin and chilli. After cooking it I tasted it and it is sadly quite tasteless. ...
10
votes
7answers
449 views

How can I make the most effective use of high-quality olive oil?

I was recently in an organic market and sampled some of the finest olive oil I've ever tasted. I bought a bottle, and I'm now looking for ways to maximize my enjoyment of it. I'm familiar with ...
6
votes
4answers
455 views

Why does salt taste different in different dishes?

If I salt tomato, potato and pasta, their tastes change in completely different ways to me. Why is this? Had I put oregano on them, they'd all taste like oregano. Update: The question is not "is it ...
14
votes
5answers
5k views

What are the differences between various types of paprika, and which have the most flavor?

I've tried various different brands of paprika but none seem to have any flavor. Can anyone recommend a kind or brand of paprika that is less bland? For example, I've seen certain "special" ...
4
votes
2answers
519 views

What does 6% acidity taste like?

A friend and I have been doing research on a recipe and he encountered a statement to the effect that the result should be around "6% acidity." I am not familiar with what this would mean in the ...
2
votes
1answer
635 views

How to extract the most flavor out of vanilla beans?

Today I made creme brulee, which I'm not very familiar with but have done once or twice. The consistancy was fine, aswell as the caramelized sugar, but it had a very low taste of vanilla, even though ...
3
votes
2answers
216 views

Is there an aging process by which to “oak” meat?

I was hoping there might be more ideas under this question, but I have been reading up on aging and curing meat and would like to know if there is some kind of process that, while aging the meat, can ...
2
votes
1answer
2k views

Does sesame seed oil taste like toasted sesame seeds?

When you have sesame seeds on a toasted bun, is that what sesame seed oil tastes like?
2
votes
2answers
251 views

What Sampling Bread to use for Pulled Pork, open faced?

I'm making a bacon based chili with smoked pulled pork (orange juice marinade by injection, smoked dried pusilla/ancho/guajillo rub) where I reserve all the liquid at the end of the process, roux it ...
2
votes
2answers
442 views

Is it safe to eat marinated beef that has been frozen for three days?

What if I marinated beef with oyster sauce, salt, sugar, soy sauce, garlic and onion but put into freezer for 3 days. Is it still good to eat?
6
votes
2answers
405 views

Principles of full flavour in dishes

I have become interested in learning how to cook better, and how cooking works. I prepared a dish, a kind-of pie made from tortillas as the base and top, with potato, feta cheese, sauteed soft rings ...
2
votes
2answers
493 views

3:1 ratio of oil:vinegar, vinaigrette — how can I use this in soups?

The introduction in the book, Ratio: The Simple Codes Behind the Craft of Everyday Cooking mentions that this mixture can be used to flavor meat and many other dishes. I have created many soups and I ...
4
votes
6answers
284 views

Possible Pumpkin Flavors

I am hoping to try out cooking with pumpkin this year and only know a) not to buy jack-o-lantern varieties for cooking, and b) about making it into sweeter things like pies, cakes, cookies et cetera. ...
5
votes
1answer
823 views

Which part of yellow cake batter gives it the yellow cake flavor?

We recently made a cobbler by adding oil, water, and powdered yellow cake mix (from a box) on top of sugary fruit filling and it came of the oven crispy and delicious with that distinctive yellow cake ...
4
votes
2answers
1k views

Lamb's Gamey Flavor

Lamb has long been one of my least favorite meats due to its gamey flavor. However, some lamb dishes that have been prepared for me tasted great with very little gamey flavor. But I have never been ...
3
votes
3answers
259 views

Does the drying out of vegetables affect the taste after cooking?

If I cut the onions and vegetables in the morning, they dry up till evening. Is there a taste change when you eat cooked vegetables, which dried out over 8 hours (before cooking)?
1
vote
4answers
2k views

How can I make my lemonade more tart/tangy?

I'm making lemonade, but no matter what ratios of lemon to sugar I use, I can't get that tartness and tang that I can taste in my favourite commercial drinks. I noticed that even with drinks that ...
5
votes
2answers
404 views

Frozen yogurt flavor pairings

I like to make homemade yogurt and I am experimenting with timing to get my yogurt to be not so sour but still completely set. Yogurt is, by definition, quite acidic since that is what sets the ...
3
votes
2answers
673 views

How to Flavor Homemade Gum Drops

For favors that I am making for an upcoming party, I'm looking to do some old-fashioned homemade gum drops. I have found a recipe that looks do-able. It calls for candy flavoring. I've also found ...
9
votes
7answers
916 views

I fancy making flavoured 'spaghetti', any tips?

I would like to experiment with flavoured 'spaghetti' by taking a juice and gelling it in spaghetti shape, so I could have beetroot strands that I could use in a pasta dish. Anyone done this? Got ...
8
votes
5answers
914 views

What technique best infuses spices into a dish?

If I have a group of spices, all dried and ground, say: nutmeg, clove, cinnamon, ginger, and black pepper... I'm curious about how to maximize their flavor for a drink or dish, and in what liquids ...
4
votes
4answers
214 views

Reducing the saltiness of commercially prepared seasoning

I've been cooking a certain brand of noodles, and noticed that the seasoning provided is quite salty than you'd expect. Is there a way to reduced the saltiness without a noticeable change in flavor? ...
14
votes
2answers
529 views

What flavorants stand up to long cooking?

My answer to this question (link) prompted a question in my own mind. I wanted to share some tips regarding when to add herbs, spices, aromatics, etc., and had a few suggestions (bay leaves and garlic ...
11
votes
2answers
571 views

How Can I Tell If Meat Has Been Brined?

My wife and I were eating some rotisserie chicken the other night and she commented something to the effect of "I think they brined this because I can taste the seasoning pretty deep in the meat." I ...
6
votes
2answers
3k views

How to reduce bitterness of Basil?

I had some fresh Basil which was going dry, so I decided to make it into a sour cream dip (don't ask me why I didn't think of making a simple pesto before I added the sour cream).. The final product ...
12
votes
3answers
502 views

What brine ingredients are effective?

I frequently brine chicken and pork, and mostly it's just salt and water, sometime sugar, and occasionally garlic. But I've seen all sorts of other "goodies" people add in, like spices, herbs, ...
7
votes
3answers
43k views

How long can you freeze raw chicken before it seriously affects its taste?

The dramatic effects of freezing something almost always has an immediate impact on taste. But it seems like the longer something is in the freezer the worse it tastes. Recently, I found some months ...
2
votes
3answers
652 views

how to fix pudding that got extra sweet?

i have made the chocolate pudding and accidentally added loads of sugar..now it is too sweet n too sticky..what can i do with it except throwing it out?
9
votes
6answers
3k views

How much salt should I add to a dish?

I find it hard to figure out how much salt to add to dishes. I'm always afraid I'll make it too salty. Recipes always call for salt to taste, but what does that mean? Is there a good rule of thumb?
7
votes
5answers
3k views

Advantages of using vinegar as a salt substitute for enhancing flavor?

I read a short blurb in Cooking for Geeks that said vinegar can be used as a substitute for salt, as a flavor enhancer, to make food less bland. I plan on experimenting, but I don't know where to ...
3
votes
1answer
2k views

How can I emulsify cod liver oil, or otherwise mask its taste?

Background I have some cod liver oil to take a supplement, but the taste is sufficiently unpleasant that I am not sure how to finish the bottle off. In the past, I have found emulsified cod liver oil ...
19
votes
5answers
6k views

Flavour combinations - structural analysis

Without neccesarily going into molecular cooking (although we could): does any literature / website / theory provide information on flavor / flavour combinations that go well together? (ignoring ...
13
votes
9answers
17k views

How can I cook more flavorful Chicken through and through?

When I cook chicken, the flavor seems to be concentrated in the skin. But when I get a rotisserie chicken from Costco, it seems to be very flavorful through and through, beyond just the skin. I've ...
3
votes
2answers
300 views

What is the source of the very strong flavour in some bad fats (or dairy products?) that only some people can taste?

It's a very, very strong flavour (like hot chili peppers in potency and ability to linger). It tastes nothing like any food I know - I've thought of it as kind of "chalky" (not sure why I know what ...
4
votes
1answer
172 views

How to make a sauce using sugared citrus rinds?

I finally separated the citrus rinds (orange and lemon) from the citrus sugar. All the bits of rind are small. With them I was planning on making a citrus sauce to go on top of my brownies and was ...
6
votes
3answers
532 views

How can I get brine flavour into turkey?

Since I started doing holiday dinners, I've always brined my birds. I love the result, but I find that while the turkey comes out nice and moist, it doesn't pick up much flavour from the brine. For ...
6
votes
3answers
278 views

Ways to counter the burn of too many scallions?

Last night I made mashed cauliflower and made the mistake of putting in too many scallions before I blended it. The result is a mashed cauliflower that has the distinct burn of eating raw onion. Is ...
5
votes
2answers
313 views

Apple Cider is too sweet for gravy

Hey. I'm in Vermont. We have lots of apple ciders and lots of amazing apples (let me recommend this year's lady apples...bet on 2010 Cider! ) I've been roasting local chickens, and then deglasing ...
1
vote
1answer
839 views

Describing the taste of Illy coffee and similar brands

I'm no coffee expert - I can't describe flavours well, but I know what I like. And I'd like to learn to describe tastes better. Illy is my favourite coffee (for French press use) - it seems a lot ...
7
votes
2answers
2k views

In a recipe, how much is “to taste”?

A lot of recipes I've been preparing lately often list salt and black pepper as "to taste" in terms of quantity. I get that the general idea is to make the food taste good, but I'm not sure that I ...
11
votes
1answer
1k views

Why does roasting vegetables before pureeing into soup affect the flavour?

Last night I made a butternut squash soup. The recipe said to roast some squash and onion for 45 mins before boiling with stock for 15 and then pureeing. Is anyone able to explain (in moderate depth) ...
20
votes
4answers
1k views

How does the way that I cut my garlic affect the taste of my food?

I've seen recipes that called for coarsely chopped garlic and recipes that called for finely chopped or minced garlic. What affect does that cut have on the final taste of my dish? What about crushed ...
5
votes
3answers
5k views

How do I cook radicchio to make it taste less bitter?

Although I like the basic taste of radicchio a lot, I frequently get heads that are so bitter as to be basically inedible. Can you suggest some cooking techniques that are particularly effective at ...
12
votes
5answers
2k views

Why do things smell good while cooking but have little flavour when finished

While cooking, particularly things that cook slowly on the hob, it smells really good while cooking but when finished it never seems to have as much flavour as I hoped. Am I doing something wrong or ...
5
votes
2answers
216 views

Flavor notes of olive oil varietals?

I prefer extra-virgin olive oils with fruit and grassy notes, rather than the peppery back-of-the-throat flavors that some folks enjoy. Are there particular olive varietals that are more likely to be ...
3
votes
1answer
850 views

How can I make the best use of chocolate peppers?

One grower at the farmer's market in the alley near my work recently started selling a crop of chocolate peppers. I've had some moderate success using them as an ingredient, but am looking for tips on ...
12
votes
3answers
26k views

What is the formal definition of savory?

What is the formal definition of "savory" when used in cooking? I hear a lot about things coming in either sweet or savory forms — e.g. crepes — but in context it doesn't seem that savory ...
4
votes
6answers
8k views

What Common Or Uncommon Flavors Pair Well With Chocolate? [closed]

I'm familiar with the traditional combinations of orange, mint, and raspberry and a few of the new flavors such as chillies and bacon. What other ideas are there though?
6
votes
5answers
2k views

Source of smoky flavor in salsa?

I'm experimenting with making my own salsa. I recently had some that had an interesting flavor, rather smoky. Is anyone aware of what might add this flavor? I'd like to add that flavor to my own ...