Flavor Combinations 101

Reader Contribution by Heidi Hunt
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A few months ago, our office was discussing the possibility of a new department in the magazine – all about food. The lead editor sent around an email requesting suggestions for what might be included in the new department.  My suggestion? Tell us what herbs and spices go best with which basic foods and which food flavor combinations are the most appealing.

Well, it appears that a whole big book has been written on that topic – ” The Flavor Bible.” And since we sell the book through our shopping site, I went right to the back room and purchased a copy. What a gem of a resource the book is! I’ve used it when making cream of asparagus soup (dill is a good herb to add), rhubarb crumble (add some ginger, I would have used nutmeg) and salmon (garlic, lemon, lime or heavy cream – yum!).

The book is arranged in alphabetical order, so it’s easy to find any food. It also has special flavor affinities for many foods, such as pork+peaches+balsamic vinegar or figs+lemon+rosemary. I would never have thought to put peaches with balsamic vinegar.

As the veggies and fruits in my garden begin to ripen, I’m sure I’ll frequently be consulting the book to find the best combinations to concoct my own special recipes. If you have discovered a favorite flavor combination, please share it with us in the comments section, below. And do check out the Real Food department in the magazine and on the website.

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