For those of you who love to cook, but also find yourself perpetually curious about the “why’s” of a particular technique or specific ingredient, you may already be familiar with some of the writings and videos of food scientist Harold McGee. I’ll confess, I was unaware until a friend sent me an entertaining video about MSG (yes, monosodium glutamate) that was posted on the Fine Dining Lovers site.
Have you had your salad today? According to health experts, eating salad almost every day may be one of the healthiest habits you can have. And, of course, eating salads is one of the simplest ways to eat more fruits and vegetables, which contributes to overall health.
Here are a dozen fun facts about salads, and some savory salad recipes.
In her recent blog, registered dietitian Regan Jones, co-founder of the popular “Healthy Aperture” food blog photo-sharing site, helps us understand why grilled cheese is so good. Here’s what she says:
“The humble grilled cheese is one of those foods that we cherish as a child, but never really think about “why” it has so much control over our taste buds. I recently learned that the pull of that savory pile of cheese and toasted bread may have more to do with science than you ever imagined. It’s because of the 5th flavor, umami, and specifically an amino acid (glutamate) which tickles our taste buds into experiencing the unique flavor. In fact, we’re born with specific receptors on our tongue for umami with glutamate being the main trigger for the receptors.”
“It’s hard to put into words what umami tastes like, but if you think about the flavor of a warm aged cheese (like that of a good grilled cheese), you’ll quickly salivate your way to understanding umami.”
As we all start to enjoy the warmer weather this time of year, besides the wonderful aromas of spring in the air what “spring smell” can you think of that’s not natural but man-made – and it makes you hungry?! Hint: Think smoky and savory.
An excellent recent article (Feb. 26, 2016) published in Food & Nutrition magazine, a publication of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics, informs cooks how to “Make Low-Salt Cooking Taste Amazing with an Umami Boost.”
The article highlights some creative ways to deliver low-sodium, umami-intense and nutrient-dense foods that diners will crave.