At some point of your life, you have tried the delicious food of the Indian cuisine. It is known that Indian dishes have complex, sweet, spicy, and savory flavors. Usually, most of the Indian food we eat is creamy and is paired with flatbread. But there is something that makes it so delicious that you want to have it every single day.
In order to find the scientific reason behind the deliciousness of Indian Food, Anupam Jaina N Kb and Ganesh Gagler, 2 researchers from the Indian Institute for Technology in Jodhpur, decided to perform an analysis on 2500 Indian dishes to find out what really makes them so delicious.
The 2 researchers ran a fine-tooth comb through TarlaDalal.com, the number one food site of India that has the recipes of over 17,000 dishes.
Gagler and Jaina said, “We study food pairing in recipes of Indian cuisine to show that, in contrast to positive food pairing reported in some Western cuisines, Indian cuisine has a strong signature of negative food pairing,”
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He added, “The more the extent of flavor-sharing between any two ingredients, [the] lesser their co-occurrence.”
This means if you find cayenne in an Indian dish, you won’t find another ingredient that would share the same compounds, but you will find same spices.
The study said this is true in 8 of the sub-cuisines from Punjabi to South Indian to Bengali.
194 unique ingredients were identified in the recipes, and were subdivided into 15 categories which include meats, spices, seeds, herbs, and more.
One thing that was found in the study is that the spices and the methods used in pairing and combining were really amazing. It emerged as the character-defining attributes of the Indian cuisine.
The study said, “Each of the spices is uniquely placed in its recipe to shape the flavor-sharing pattern with [the] rest of the ingredients, and is sensitive to replacement even with other spices.”
To make it simple, each spice has its specific role in bringing a whole new flavor into the dish that it goes into. This can be the sweetness of the ginger to the bitterness of the tamarind, its combinations brings out a unique taste that you will not find anywhere.
An average Indian dish uses over 12 herbs and spices, and it’s pretty obvious where all that good taste comes from.
The average Indian recipe calls for a minimum of 7 different ingredients, and in total, Indian cuisine makes use of 200 unique ingredients.
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