Why does salt sweeten / sharpen the tastes of certain fruits?
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21-11-2012, 01:38 PM
Why does salt sweeten / sharpen the tastes of certain fruits?
For example: oranges and watermelons.

Seriously, put salt on them. They become sweeter.

Why doesn't our brain interpret it as salty?

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21-11-2012, 01:48 PM
RE: Why does salt sweeten / sharpen the tastes of certain fruits?
Blech - I hate salt on my fruit. Sadcryface

The dichotomy of sweet/salty is always part of our need for variety - we do it all the time in dishes. We crave all tastes all in one mouthful.... and it heads straight to our pleasure centers in our brain.

I learned about this at one time... then ran right out, got more involved with botany, and forgot everything about it. Drinking Beverage

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21-11-2012, 02:13 PM
RE: Why does salt sweeten / sharpen the tastes of certain fruits?
You think salt's something, try some Miraculin and then go suck on a lemon. Now that's some crazy shit right there. "Taste tripping" is a good description. Big Grin

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21-11-2012, 07:15 PM
RE: Why does salt sweeten / sharpen the tastes of certain fruits?
My guess would be that the salt neutralises some of the acid in the fruit, Acids have a bitter taste. Less acid, less of a bitter taste,meaning the sweeter tastes aren't masked by the bitterness. So the fruit tastes better.

Edit. Salt is alkali so will be neutralised by the acid, which is why the fruit wont taste salty.(will only work up till a point)

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21-11-2012, 08:14 PM
RE: Why does salt sweeten / sharpen the tastes of certain fruits?
Within a fruit there are multiple types of flavours (combination of sweet/sour/bitter/salty). Apparently adding salt helps reduce the effects of bitterness within fruit. I can't find the exact mechanism of how this happens, so here's what I hypothesise: The sodium ions from salt interfere with the signalling pathway of the bitter and sour taste receptors, thus reducing their "intensity" in a sense. The sweet taste is intensified since it is less masked by the bitter and sour tastes.

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21-11-2012, 08:16 PM
RE: Why does salt sweeten / sharpen the tastes of certain fruits?
(21-11-2012 02:13 PM)GirlyMan Wrote:  You think salt's something, try some Miraculin and then go suck on a lemon. Now that's some crazy shit right there. "Taste tripping" is a good description. Big Grin
Never heard of it before this. Looks to be pretty bitchin'!

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21-11-2012, 09:35 PM
RE: Why does salt sweeten / sharpen the tastes of certain fruits?
(21-11-2012 02:13 PM)GirlyMan Wrote:  You think salt's something, try some Miraculin and then go suck on a lemon. Now that's some crazy shit right there. "Taste tripping" is a good description. Big Grin
I just ordered seeds. If anyone can grow em, I can! (plus they look pretty easy to grow. I figure I can get them fruiting in a quarter of the estimated time. MUWAHAHAHAHAHA!)

Just visiting.

-SR
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21-11-2012, 09:41 PM
RE: Why does salt sweeten / sharpen the tastes of certain fruits?
(21-11-2012 01:38 PM)kingschosen Wrote:  For example: oranges and watermelons.

Seriously, put salt on them. They become sweeter.

Why doesn't our brain interpret it as salty?
Tastings are a fun thing. I for instance LOVE SCOTCH and I enjoy wine. Cheese matching has always been a fascinating topic for me. Softer cheeses vs harder cheeses change the flavor based off of fruity wine (sugar) and other wines which are more bitter (tannin).

So a bitter tasting wine that'll make your lips pucker can be amazingly fruity and sweet when a soft wine offsets it. Different cheeses do different things. Oddly enough, harder cheese do contain higher amounts of salt too.
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22-11-2012, 05:53 AM
RE: Why does salt sweeten / sharpen the tastes of certain fruits?
salt on fruit?
sounds dodgy to me..
I'm gonna try this tomorrow.

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22-11-2012, 12:29 PM
RE: Why does salt sweeten / sharpen the tastes of certain fruits?
Has anyone other than girly tried miracle berries? I was gonna start a thread, but if no ones even tried them, I won't bother.

Girly, do you get the tablets you linked to often? Ever tried fresh berries? Difference? You got me real curious now. I heard of these a few years ago but forgot about them entirely. I ordered some tabs to try, and also ordered seeds to try growing some. Tell me everything!

Just visiting.

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