My favourite flavour. By Bertrand Grébaut

Raw but warm scallops, seaweed beurre blanc, oyster and sorrel condiment. Photo: courtesy of Bertrand Grébaut
When talking about flavours such as salty, bitter, sour, sweet, umami … without any doubt the most important for me is acidity. It is completely indispensable in the development of an idea, not just because it literally helps us to digest our food – it is also essential in finding a balance between flavours. Acidity cuts through fat, subdues bitterness, neutralises salt. It is addictive in every nuance: vegetal (sorrel), fermentation (vinegar, lactic acid, pickles) and in fruits (citrus and berries).
There is another thing I could never do without in my kitchen when talking of flavours: butter! Raw butter, salty or not, brown butter or butter just sizzling at the perfect temperature. There is nothing better than hot crusty bread with a big slice of salted butter slowly melting into the crumb.  We might never stop looking for combinations of ingredients techniques and flavours, but if there was one taste that always stands out, it would be the taste of butter. Butter captures flavour, it exalts flavour, thanks to its own capacity to really imbue others. It is the protagonist of classic French cooking, translating into berry butter, Maître d’hôtel butter, beurre blanc…
Bertrand Grébaut, Septime (Paris, France)
Bertrandt Grébaut. Photo by Sylvain Monjanel
Bertrandt Grébaut. Photo by Sylvain Monjanel

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