A Few Thoughts on Flavors, Tastes and Cravings and the use of Flavor Accelerators!
I’m guessing that we have been eating a plant based whole food diet for about a month now. I’ve lost 15 pounds and Kathy is at about 12. My energy is better than it’s been in a long time we are learning new tricks in the kitchen everyday.
When this adventure started I was amazed at how delicious the different dishes we were coming up with tasted, but in the past several days I’ve been having a problem… if I eat the same thing for a few days I quickly tire of it’s taste, to the point of losing my appetite (now that’s a first.)
I’ve given this quite a bit of thought and I think I know what’s going on. As a cook and food writer I’ve spent many years thinking about food, and how to make it taste great. One of the first tricks I learned when I started cooking was the use of flavor accelerators. What are flavor accelerators you might ask? These are the ingredients and techniques that cause you to love certain dishes; they can cause you to overeat, even when it hurts. Salt, sugar, fat, vinegar, alcohol, in combination and used in myriad ways; the crust on cobbler, the crunchy skin on fried chicken, the gooey, sticky BBQ sauce that has been caramelized onto hickory smoked pork ribs, are all extreme examples of flavor accelerators.
In our new diet I find that flavor accelerators are what is missing. It’s like listening to music very loud for years and then turning it all the way down, you need to retrain your ear.
If you make a salad and put home made ranch dressing on it you can eat the same salad night after night. We are making some very delicious dishes but without the flavor accelerators. What this is causing seems to be that we need to keep creating new things and mixing it up at every meal.
This is a real challenge but I think we’re up to it. Another thing is happening, I’m no longer overeating. When I’m full I just don’t want the extra food. Now if the meal was dripping with a rich butter sauce or a cheese I would eat until I was very full and then some! I think we’re on to something here we are eating more natural portions, which has to be a good thing!