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Mouthfeel: How Texture Makes Taste


What makes a dish go from everyday to decadent? It’s often the texture that transforms a dish. 

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The tactile experience of eating food plays a vital role in the enjoyment of a dish. (Some of us still can’t get over the consistency of oysters, while others rejoice over that first fizzy sip of a soda.) So, it’s no wonder that many culinary professionals rely on sous-vide cooking for its unparalleled precision and control, which in turn produces perfectly appealing textures.

In Mouthfeel, authors Ole Mouritsen and Klavs Styrbæk, a biophysicist and chef respectively, examine the role of food’s physical qualities in shaping our perceptions of taste, identifying why we prefer the sensations of certain foods to others. The pair takes us on a journey around the world that reveals why certain textures are preferred in the quest for tasty dishes, offering a diverse selection of recipes from easy to exotic along the way. This mixture of a cookbook and something like a science textbook even includes some experiments to illustrate their points about the importance of texture. (Yes, this book encourages you to taste test the crunch factor for various potato chips.)

Whether you’re a food science enthusiast or are simply looking for some tidbits to bring up at your next dinner party, Mouthfeel takes a deep dive into the little studied science of gastronomic texture, tracing its roots from early theories of taste to today’s modern kitchens and how to create palate-pleasing dishes with just the right amount of texture.

Armed with an understanding of mouthfeel’s nuances, professional and home chefs can replicate food experiences with alternative ingredients and methods—opening the doors to more inspired dishes. It’s the perfect accompaniment for any home chefs looking to grow their recipe repertoire and expand their flavor horizons.