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Sweet taste and smell

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Sweet taste and smell

Postby Nithin » Mon Apr 03, 2006 1:17 pm

My friend recently mentioned that apples have no taste. He said that it is because of the sweet smell that we feel that the apple is sweet.
I went home with some apples and ate them covering my nose trying to taste them. Even I felt so; that apples have no sweet taste because after I removed my hands from my nose I could feel the sweet taste. :oops:
I don't know what is really the truth; maybe my mind was playing tricks on me. What could be the truth!!!
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Postby Khaiy » Mon Apr 03, 2006 4:37 pm

Apples are full of sugars, so I think that they probably do have a taste. But the sensory organs (especially taste and smell) are very interconnected, so there probably is some relationship between the two.
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Postby MrMistery » Mon Apr 03, 2006 6:11 pm

Actually the don't.
Here's an experiment: cut some potatos and apples into cubic pieces of equal sizes. Then cover your nose and eyes and tell someone to come and give you some of the cubes, as you try to guess what they are. Do the experiment for at least 20 pieces to get a good result.
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Postby Nithin » Tue Apr 04, 2006 2:16 am

My friend said that potatoes also do not have taste. I believed him in that aspect. But i was doubtful on the stuff about apples.
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Unknown is a galaxy!!!

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Postby canalon » Tue Apr 04, 2006 2:59 am

You also have o take into account that taste is intimately linked with smell. If strong simple tastes can be perceived with a pinched nose most are barely perceptible.
This (partly) explains the weird maners of wine tasters which are designed to allow for the most complete perception of the taste of a sip of wine.
In fact taste is also extremly dependant of the texture and temperature of the food, which is mor a "touch" information. And if you take into account he visual pleasure sometimes inspired by food (colors, etc) you will understand that food tasting use at least 4 of our 5 senses (at least because food can also produce noise and they can influence our perception of what we eat, although this is probably a very minor one) and that the taste may not be the more important.
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Postby kiekyon » Tue Apr 04, 2006 7:05 am

http://www.newscientist.com/article/mg18925332.400.html

What we normally refer to as "taste" is more correctly termed flavour, which is made up of taste, irritation and aroma. Taste per se consists only of the five sensations that can be detected by the tongue: salt, sweet, sour, bitter and umami. These are not affected by temperature and nor is irritation from, for instance, chilli peppers. But aroma, which is sensed in the nose, is strongly affected by food temperature because it depends on the release of volatile oils. The higher the temperature, the more volatiles are released, and the stronger the aroma and thus the total flavour sensation.

The flavour of foods that have little aroma are enhanced by heating, whereas foods with strong aromas may become overpowering at high temperatures. Red wines, for instance, tend to be drunk at room temperature with meals that have strong flavours, so achieving a balance in which food and drink complement each other, rather than cancelling each other out. White wines, on the other hand, are often drunk cold with fish or other weakly flavoured foods. When imbibed at room temperature on its own, however, white wine gives a perfectly pleasant flavour sensation, and one suspects it is just convention for white wine to be served chilled.

Another important effect of temperature on meals is its influence on the viscosity of starch-thickened sauces, which drops at higher temperatures because starches react to heat. The texture of food is very important to people. A meal covered in a cold, starch-thickened sauce is pretty unappealing, while a non-starch-thickened sauce such as mayonnaise covering the same ingredients in a sandwich would be a very different prospect.

There is also a large element of convention and cultural preference involved. We prefer our gazpacho cold but our minestrone piping hot. Beer is served at room temperature in the UK but chilled almost everywhere else. Some people prefer whisky on the rocks, others - especially in Scotland - find ice an abomination. Hot coffee and iced coffee are equally acceptable to most people, and choice depends mainly on ambient temperature. It's all about circumstance, accompanying flavours, and how we are used to having our food and drink served
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Postby kabuto » Tue Apr 04, 2006 8:25 am

kiekyon wrote:
Taste per se consists only of the five sensations that can be detected by the tongue: salt, sweet, sour, bitter and umami.


what does umami taste like?
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Postby kiekyon » Wed Apr 05, 2006 3:16 am

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
(Redirected from Umami)
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The basic tastes are the commonly recognized types of taste sensed by humans. Humans receive tastes through sensory organs called taste buds or gustatory calyculi, concentrated on the upper surface of the tongue. Scientists generally describe four basic tastes: bitter, salty, sour, and sweet; a fifth taste, umami, is gaining increasing acceptance. This contrasts markedly with the sense of olfaction or smell, where very large numbers of chemicals, aromatic compounds especially, can be differentiated.

There is scientific dispute as to whether basic tastes exist per se or are simply an overly reductionist concept. There is also philosophical dispute between biochemists, who believe evidence for a chemical reaction in tongue tissue means there is a basic taste, and psychologists, who see taste as much more based on psychological states and experiences.[citation needed]

Psychologists speak more about "flavor profiles" than tastes, based on the ways people report experiencing taste. Such reports and testing tend to show even the classic four basic tastes shading into each other on a spectrum of experience
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