The colour of food is important – if a strawberry is red, it’s most likely ripe, and should taste sweet, and if a piece of meat has a blue or green tinge, it could be turning off.

Colour and Appetite

Marketeers, bloggers and Instagramers know that just the picture of delicious food can be enough to make people feel hungry.

Colour and Taste

how food looks, even just what colour it is, can change how someone thinks it tastes.

When I was at catering college in the 1980s we did an experiment by making four clear jellies

300ml water

25g caster sugar

3 sheets leaf gelatine

We Gently heated the water with the sugar in a pan until the sugar dissolved (but not boiling, as the gelatine will be less effective). Pre-soak all the gelatine leaves in a bowlful of cold water for about 5 minutes, or until they are soft and pliable.

Remove the gelatine leaves from the soaking water and squeeze out any excess water with your hands.

Stir into the warm water, until melted pour into shot glasses. Next flavour each glass with a drop of clear flavour (I used organic oils Lemon, Orange, Strawberry, Blackcurrant) stir well.

Then colour them all orange and let set in the fridge.

When students were asked to taste them, most thought they were orange flavoured.

You can also try this with lemonade and different colours.

We also made all the food for the refectory that day following the same principles as a experiment in the 1970s, where people were given steak and chips that looked ordinary under special lighting.

When the students saw the meal under normal lights, some felt ill because the steak was blue and the chips were green, and the gravy was red.

One of the reasons we don’t eat much blue food is most likely because in nature blue can be a warning that the food has gone moldy or off.

An advantage to this is blue can be used as appetite suppressant if you are trying to lose weight try using a blue plate.

Restaurants sometimes use colour to make foods seem to taste stronger, sweeter or better. Think Indian and Asian with foods like tandoori!

Make sure you pay more attention to the colour you choose for decorating your chocolates and pasties.

Also try taking a look at Hazel Lee, my chocolate friend and collegues website for more thoughts and tools on this.

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