Even though you may not want to admit it, everyone loves a freaky food. Whether you’re the one to dip carrots in nutella or devour a peanut butter and mayo sandwich, messing with your senses sometimes seems like the best idea. This is where your new best friend comes in: the miracle berry. A small red berry from Ghana, Thailand and Costa Rica that makes your taste buds go trippy. And the best news of all, it’s the MVP of Thursday’s Flavour Tripping.
If you would like some reassurance that we aren’t just feeding you some sketchy tablet, look no further. The berry is grown on the Synsepalum dulcificum plant and contains one of the few naturally occurring taste modifiers called Miraculin. This protein creates a chemical reaction on your tongue that causes the taste receptors to become super sensitive, making the sweet signals overpower the sour ones.
For a while it seemed like it would become the solution to obesity and world hunger. There is even a cookbook featuring the berry, which has over 150 recipes to trick your senses with. Yet, there is bad news for all our friends across the pond. The FDA officially refused it to become a sugar substitute for fear of it becoming addictive. However there is a supposed conspiracy theory, which claims the FDA were forced into the decision by sugar and sweetener producers.
Famously it makes lemons taste like lemonade and apparently Tabasco becomes a hot doughnut glaze. But taste doesn’t seem to be the only sense affected. At one tripping party the host watched on, as the guests became “literally wild animals, tearing apart everything on the table”. Let’s hope that Thursday remains a more civilised affair.
Be at Bibi’s for 8pm to enjoy your experimental tasting plates. If you’re feeling brave, go in for that shot of balsamic vinegar and make some Guinness your new chaser. Final tip: make sure to coat your entire tongue or you may get a nasty surprise. And remember: when life gives you lemons, grab a miracle berry.