Half a croissant, on a plate, with a sign in front of it saying '50c'
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Pick 'n' Mix Flavour Dots

Flavour combination idea generation made easy
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For budding chefs, developing their palette, and coming up ideas for new and interesting flavour combinations is one of the most important learning curves. Developing a 'minds taste' for which flavours might work together in imaginative ways is quite difficult for inexperienced newbies. This is an idea for making that process faster, easier and cheaper.

You know those little gummy rubber dots that come on sheets, that you use to stick on the corners of objects to prevent them from scratching the surface beneath.

Imagine sheets of those, but each dot is a different, intense and pure flavour. Basically like a little savoury jelly tot.

I envisage sheets of similar flavour groupings to be produced, e.g. a 'root vegetable' sheet, a 'tropical fruit' sheet, a 'game bird' sheet, 'tastes of the orient', 'offal' etc - you get the idea.

It's then a simple process of picking combinations, peeling off a few dots and letting the flavours melt together in your mouth, to start the ideas flowing for real food combinations.

Some thought would need to be put into how the dots are produced in order to give the best shelf life and intensity/purity of flavour. But I imagine a box of these sat in every chef's pantry, ready to test out any inspired ideas that come to them, without having to go out and buy the real ingredients.

HowardMarks, Nov 20 2012


       Interesting idea. Not *completely* convinced, since the secret of a good combination is often in the relative amounts, or in the way the ingredients are prepared (for instance, sugary foods have very different flavours when caramelised; a hint of orange lifts the flavour of raspberries, even though they don't taste great together, etc).
MaxwellBuchanan, Nov 20 2012

       Good point about differences in preparation methods. This could be tackled by having a a more in depth sheet for one core flavour, but each dot being a different method of preparation, e.g. 'Onion - fried', 'Onion - oven roasted' etc.
HowardMarks, Nov 20 2012


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