What makes a good Turmeric flavour pairing? Turmeric and citrus – do these flavours really work together? These are questions we kept asking ourselves too. After all, it isn’t a flavour combination that we were very familiar with, but the answer is yes, Turmeric and citrus flavours complement each other perfectly and we now know why!
Turmeric is an essential ingredient in Sri Lankan curry powder and we’ve always seen it added into our homemade curries, giving that rich colour and rounding out the spicy flavours. In the past few years, we’ve seen Turmeric – mixed with other Asian spices like Cinnamon and Cardamom – popping up in trendy cafés in the form of golden milk lattés, a chai-like hot drink. Most recent interest has centred around homemade recipes for Turmeric teas and tonics to help boost immunity and promote wellness.
Belonging to the ginger family, Turmeric looks like Ginger’s mini-me with papery, knobbly skin, but deep yellow or orange inside. Its characteristic bright colouring is the reason the superfood is sometimes referred to as the “golden spice” or “Indian saffron”. Turmeric sits in the spice rack but we wouldn’t call it spicy or hot. It has an earthy, aromatic, bitter taste profile and slight warming, peppery undernotes.
Citrus is one of the topmost flavours and scents in the world with its refreshing, uplifting properties associated with optimism. A noteworthy fact: the citrus fruits we enjoy every day are cultivated species from only three ancestors – citron, pomelo and mandarin – all native to south and east Asia. Our grocery store favourites – limes, lemons, oranges and grapefruit – are products of natural crossing in the wild and selective cultivation in farms.
Citrus and bitter flavours balance well together, with citrus providing a zesty freshness to the savoury notes of Turmeric. Interestingly too, there are scents of orange and ginger in Turmeric that lean in to complement with citrus flavours, giving that unexpected edge and sweetness.
This Turmeric-citrus power pairing provides a more versatile flavour combination for smoothies, salad dressings, sauces and sweets – rather than the typical use of Turmeric for South Asian curries. When combined with citrus fruits, there is no “curry taste” from the Turmeric as its earthiness is well balanced by the tart freshness of citrus.
The year 2021 is seeing an exciting trend of fruity and functional flavours in a variety of food and beverage categories, including the Turmeric-citrus pairing in cocktails and sweet treats. We’re working on a banana muffin with a special drizzle so watch this space!
Discover the unusual Turmeric and citrus flavour combination in BOOSTING AMBERS.