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23 Unexpected Flavor Combos That Taste Amazing

Some of these are recent discoveries from chefs like Heston Blumenthal who study the chemical compounds of food. Others have been paired together for centuries in various ethnic cuisines. Either way: They work.

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1. Olives + White Chocolate

Try it with an Olive and White Chocolate Panini recipe.

2. Strawberries + Fava Beans

Try it in chef Chris Cosentino's Fava Bean and Strawberry Salad with Pecorino.
amazon.com

Try it in chef Chris Cosentino's Fava Bean and Strawberry Salad with Pecorino.

3. Salmon + Licorice

Salmon in liquorice gel at The Fat Duck restaurant. See it re-created here.
Flickr: misskoslow

Salmon in liquorice gel at The Fat Duck restaurant. See it re-created here.

5. Chocolate + Sage

Fried Sage on Spicy Beef Jerky with Dark Chocolate by photographer Zack Burris.
zackburris.com

Fried Sage on Spicy Beef Jerky with Dark Chocolate by photographer Zack Burris.

8. Mushroom + Apricot

Try it in a recipe for Wild Mushroom and Apricot Ragu on Polenta Cakes.

9. Egg + Beet

Try it in Gourmet's Aussie Burger recipe.
gourmet.com

Try it in Gourmet's Aussie Burger recipe.

10. Egg + Coconut

Southeast Asia's Kaya jam — a delicious combination of coconut milk, eggs, and sugar — is gaining popularity in the U.S., thanks to chef Susan Feniger's new cookbook Street Food. In Asia it's a breakfast dish and is spread on butter toast. Try a recipe for Kaya Toast here.
beyondtheplate.net

Southeast Asia's Kaya jam — a delicious combination of coconut milk, eggs, and sugar — is gaining popularity in the U.S., thanks to chef Susan Feniger's new cookbook Street Food. In Asia it's a breakfast dish and is spread on butter toast.

Try a recipe for Kaya Toast here.

11. Strawberry + Tomato

Try it in Eleven Madison's Strawberry Gazpacho recipe on food52.
food52.com

Try it in Eleven Madison's Strawberry Gazpacho recipe on food52.

12. Rhubarb + Anise

Try a Rhubarb Anise Cocktail recipe from Two Tarts.

13. Butternut Squash + Lime

Try it in this recipe.

14. Oysters + Watermelon

Try it in a recipe for Oysters on the Half Shell with Watermelon Granita from Martha Stewart.
marthastewart.com

Try it in a recipe for Oysters on the Half Shell with Watermelon Granita from Martha Stewart.

15. Avocado + Coffee

Blend 1/2 avocado with 1 cup brewed coffee (cooled), 1/2 cup sweetened condensed milk 2 tsp vanilla and ice cubes.
scrumptiousreads.com

Blend 1/2 avocado with 1 cup brewed coffee (cooled), 1/2 cup sweetened condensed milk 2 tsp vanilla and ice cubes.

16. Orange + Olive

Get a recipe for Citrus-Marinated Olives at Bon Appetit.

17. Mushroom + Blueberry

Try it in a recipe for Mushroom, Ginger, and Blueberry Stir Fry or in Mushroom and Blueberry Balsamic Pot Roast.

18. Chocolate + Onion

Get directions here.
foodpairing.com

Get directions here.

19. White Chocolate + Caviar

Get directions here.
foodpairing.com

Get directions here.

20. Scallops + Vanilla

Try it in a recipe for Scallops Crudo with Vanilla Salt or Seared Scallops with Vanilla Cream Sauce.

21. Cinnamon + Thyme

Try it in a recipe for Cinnamon-Thyme Chicken. There's also a video.
plantoeat.com

Try it in a recipe for Cinnamon-Thyme Chicken. There's also a video.

22. Shrimp + Walnuts

Get the recipe for Chinese Honey Walnut Shrimp.

23. Basil + Cloves

Italian cooks sometimes put a pinch of ground cloves in pesto; the two foods share a sweet compound called eugenol.
amateurcookprofessionaleater.blogspot.be

Italian cooks sometimes put a pinch of ground cloves in pesto; the two foods share a sweet compound called eugenol.

Find more info about flavor combinations in Niki Segnit's book The Flavor Thesaurus, Karen Page and Andrew Dornenburg's book The Flavor Bible, and on khymos.org.

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