Say hello to the Miracle Fruit. The NYT featured this miracaculous little berry in it's dining and wine section today. This tiny fruit has the power to alter our tastebuds, "rendering lemons as sweet as candy." Research shows that the berry has an active protein called miraculin which binds with the taste buds and, acting as a sweetness inducer, makes acidic foods taste sweet. The berry, Synsepalum dulcificum, is native to West Africa and was discovered way back in the day (1725 to be precise).
The fruit is the main star at flavor tripping parties, small events held where guests recieve a berry and then sample an array of not so nice tasting things (lemons, tabasco sauce, mustard, vinegar, etc). The room suddenly fills with oh's and ah's as the effects of the berry warps the flavors. An attendee to the most recent flavor tripping party last Friday "dropped a large dollop of lemon sorbet into a glass of Guinness, stirred, drank and proclaimed that it tasted like a “chocolate shake.”
So I'm sold. I will most definately be hosting a flavor tripping party. When and where? I don't know yet. The fruit isn't easily obtainable, but you can buy 30 of the berries plus shipping and handling for 90 bucks through this site. So I'll be getting my order in this week...xo
Claire the Intern
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