Author Barb Stuckey says if you really want to understand why you like the food you like, you can’t stop with taste. Her new book “Taste What You’re Missing” explains how all five senses interact to make our experience of meals delicious, or disappointing.

Stuckey joins us to discuss how you can use the science of flavor to make feasts for all the senses.

Barb Stuckey, professional food developer and author

  • Bill_Woods

    For adding umami, I understand that, in addition to glutamates, there’s another group of chemicals called inosinates (spelling?). What’s that about?

  • California Francophile

    Did your author really mention “masculine sounds?”  Give us a break!!

  • I am an omnivorous eater – I like everything and can name on
    one hand the number of things I would just refuse to eat and still have a few
    fingers left over. I always get frustrated when I am with someone who is picky
    about food, who won’t eat this and won’t eat that, and refuses to try anything
    new. Any thoughts why some people are so particular about food rather than
    being open-minded and adventurous?



  • Irene Vassilopoulos

    I believe my daughter is a “super taster”. She eats very few foods- maybe ten or so however some of those foods are strong like pepperoni foods with a lot of cinnamon. She also seems to have some ” food phobia”. Can you advise on how to get her to expand her menu??

  • Carol Douglass

    What an interesting topic! Ms Stuckey is so articulate, amusing, and concise, it’s a real pleasure to listen. I have a question: Has Ms Stuckey anything to say about people (me) who experience a burning sensation of the tongue and entire mouth after eating certain ostensibly mild foods? For me, it’s cantaloupe and occasionally bananas. There are times when the whole inside of my mouth burns for no apparent reason, and then many foods seem to irritate it. I’ve asked many doctors over the years, including allergists, about this, and not a one has had any answer and seems to assume that I’m “weird,” as one doctor put it, or that I exaggerate the discomfort and pain. Just asking; hoping for a hint of causation. Thanks!

  • Christopher Blunk

    I have an issue with citrus flavors added to savory dishes–any lemon squeezed on fish completely overpowers the fish for me. Same with beef stew cooked with orange rind… Any possible explanation for this?

  • Sophia

    I wanted to respond to the assertion that exposure to the “heat” of chili peppers will not effect your taste-buds and perception of taste. In truth, what we are speaking of here are chemicals and their effect on receptors of the cells that line our endothelium and this would also include our nerve ends. The “heat” of a chili is caused by a chemical called Capsaicin.With chronic exposure to capsaicin, neurons are depleted of neurotransmitters, which indeed can have an effect on the function of the receptors in the tastebuds. The effect is reversed when the capsaicin is withdrawn. 

  • Chrisco

    The Little Rascals and Limberger Cheese – thumbs up on the reference!

  • Beth A Clarke

    I have an 11 month old son who loves broccoli and brussel sprouts.  We started feeding him carrots (which are very sweet) and then gradually added in  other veggies.  So far so good! This is actually almost the same as what your guest suggested, but the sugar comes directly from the carrots – beets and apple sauce are also good natural sweeteners.  Hoping this can be helpful for other parents.  Very interesting topic, looking forward to reading the book.

  • Ruthekaiser

    “natural flavor” on a label can often mean the food is not vegetarian. As a vegetarian, I never buy foods with “natural flavor.” I wish it was required to indicate if the “natural flavor” comes from an animal source.

  • stuart

    Olive oil tasters do swallow!

  • Sandra

    I had never cared for the taste of broccoli, but when I was pregnant I CRAVED broccoli and carrots more than anything.  My daughter, now 8-yrs old, has loved broccoli and carrots since she was a baby.  Since she was 2 years old you could ask her what her favorite food is, and she will not hesitate to say “Broccoli”! ( You should see the look on other parents faces.)

  • MarkJar

    A fascinating radio program, Barb Stuckey is clearly knowledge
    about many aspects of tasting.  However,
    she got it completely wrong on the art of wine tasting and spitting and it
    appears that has little direct knowledge on that aspect of the subject. 

    As a long time wine taster and someone how has taken classes
    at UC Davis and the CIA, I can tell you that there is a correct way to
    spit.  The idea is that you allow the
    excess wine to leave your mouth keeping enough so that when you do swallow the
    remainder, a sufficient amount is present that will go back through your ole
    factory senses and allow you to judge additional elements, such as length and
    finish.  The fact is, you  do not need a mouthful of wine for this to
    occur, as the vast majority of the volume would have been swallowed and

    Might I suggest that she go back and investigate the area of
    wine tasting a little further before you distrust every “critic” that spits
    their wine? 

    Otherwise, I loved the show.

  • Guest

    Ms. Stuckey was interesting but I disagree with many of her points, especially, suggesting to introduce sugar to children. We were restricted from sugar until our 12th Birthday and, therefore, I do not eat sugar to this day. I only buy sugar to make hummingbirds something to drink.

    We are vegans and all very healthy. No one is over weight, which I think is the most important factor. Eat healthy while you are pregnant and eat lite and healthy, thereafter. (I do not think this book applies to healthy people.)

    • Jude

      Sugar isn’t good for hummingbirds either!!!!! Add plants to your garden that provide them with their natural, nutricious food.

  • Jude

    The segment’s tacit acceptance of processed food very much surprises and disappoints me.

  • Gayle Delaney

    Very interesting topic and the comments so far bring up good critiques and praise. I simply must add the Barbara/s VOICE, her tone and intonation are so very engaging and delightful. A joy just to listen to her sounds and her graceful and energetic us of English!

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