Friday, April 20, 2007


A third possibility of foodpairing what Francois Benzi of Firmenich was telling, is replacing food like herbs and spices by other herbs or spices. An example is basil. Suppose you want to make a tomato sauce with basil, but the basil is too volatile or browns too fast.
If you want a basil flavour, but not using basil, you have to look at the flavour composition of basil and try to reconstruct the basil flavour by combining other herbs.
To find the flavour composition you can use the book of Harold McGee (On Food and Cooking: The Science and Lore of the Kitchen) and go to the chapter dealing with herbs and spices. There you will find a list of herbs with the typical flavour components.
If we do this for basil we find in the list that basil contains linalool, estragol and eugenol. Then you use the same list to search for other herbs that contain the flavour. So search for in which other herbs do I find linalool or estagol or eugenol.

Linalool is present is a lot of herbs/ spices, but most linked to coriander. For estragol you can take tarragon, chervil or star anise. And eugenol is the typical flavour of cloves. So if you want to replace basil, you have to make a combination of coriander, star anise and cloves. Take in account that the quantity is very important, so you need to experiment before.

Another example is what Kevin Ryan is doing. In attachment you can find a link to a movie of this food scientist. Because of the resemblence of flavour molecules in stock and coffee. He is replacing stock with coffee (much easier to make) for making a gravy. So next time you make a gravy replace stock by fresh coffee.

People interested to do something with foodpairing, Martin Lersch from Khymos has post a blogproject where you can make a recipe by combining chocolate, coffee and garlic. To know more about this combination look to our post Foodpairing part II.

Foodpairing part IV will come up with some new foodpairing by belgian topchefs

[+ On Food and Cooking]
[+ Firmenich]
[+ Khymos TGRWT]

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Blogger Martin Lersch said...


This is absolutely brilliant! Looking forward to more posts and the site you plan to launch on flavour pairing!


5:32 PM  

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