Bitter flavours add depth and deliciousness

An interview with Jennifer McLagan, Toronto-based chef and James Beard and IACP award-winning author, about her latest cookbook, Bitter (HarperCollins Publishers, 2014).

PHOTO: Aya Brackett/HarperCollins Canada; Grapefruit Tart from Bitter by Jennifer McLagan.
 
Laura Brehaut/Postmedia News
Originally published on November 28, 2014; Postmedia
 
Beer, coffee, tea – the world’s favourite beverages offer a gateway to bitter flavours. A return to classic cocktails has resulted in an abundance of handcrafted cocktail bitters in flavours ranging from rhubarb to celery. Bitters are essential to classics such as the Old Fashioned, Manhattan and Sazerac. But what about embracing bitter flavours in the food we eat, not just in the glass? Bitterness is subjective, complex and, unlike sour, which results from consuming acids, a response to thousands of different chemical compounds.
 
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