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The Surprise Drink That Goes With Everything

Okay, we all know that you can’t have cookies and other sweets without milk. There’s a children’s book called If You Give a Mouse a Cookie (spoiler alert: he’ll want a glass of milk) that’s all about how inseparable they are, and a spoon specifically for holding sandwich cookies as you dunk them in milk. Here’s something that may come as a bit of a shocker even if you consider yourself a foodie: Milk tastes great with savory dishes too. Surprised? That’s totally understandable.

There are entire books devoted to figuring out which foods go with which wines, certification programs for cicerones (people trained to pair beer with food)—even a water sommelier, America’s first. But while dairy pairings are unexpected, they’re also dead simple: Milk tastes great with sweet and savory dishes, and you don’t have to sniff, sip, or swirl it. You also don’t have to worry about which region it came from, what the terroir was like, or how good the vintage is.

One explanation for why milk is an ideal beverage for multiple flavor profiles comes courtesy of recent research. A new study suggests that in addition to the five established tastes—sweet, salty, bitter, sour, and umami, or savory—there may be a sixth: fat, which is found in milk. And that sixth taste can amp up the overall sensory appeal of all kinds of food, meaning that something savory tastes better when it’s served with milk than it does as a stand-alone dish.

The fat in milk is surrounded by a membrane consisting of lipids and proteins that act as emulsifiers, meaning they keep the fat finely dispersed among the fluid portion of the milk. And that fluid portion is mostly made up of casein molecules, lipophilic—or fat-loving—substances that surround and wash away fat molecules, allowing rich food to …read more

Source:: Bon Appetit