A Little about Lemon

Lemon flavor is great tasting, simple and environmentally friendly. The lemon oil we use to formulate flavors is extracted from lemon peel by cold pressing it from the rinds. Typically this oil is comprised of: Limonene: 75%, Citral 10%, as well as Terpinene, alpha-Pinene, beta-Pinene, Heptanal, Octanal, Nonanal, Decanal, Undecanal, l-Linalool, alpha-Terpineol and 4-Terpineol. Citral, however, is the characterizing component of lemon oil. Most people say Citral reminds them of Lemon Pledge®. Flavor chemists carefully select oils, blend and enhance, so lemon flavors are peceived to be desireable, fresh and juicy, and not like furniture polish. Lemon flavor has a reputation for being unstable. This is primarily because of … [Read more...]

Eliot’s Adult Nut Butter, garam masala

Flavoring peanut butter is challenging A memorable project assigned to me is grape flavored peanut butter. A large peanut butter manufacturer asked my company to supply some grape flavor samples for the project. My mentor, Mr. Takeda, who entered the United States from Japan on a work visa, was confused about the project. Peanut butter and peanut butter and jelly sandwiches are popular in the States, but not Japan or other countries. Since I grew up on peanut butter and grape jelly sandwiches and not Onigiri (Japenese rice balls) my input on the project was needed. Mr. Takeda went to his formula book and selected a few grape flavors for me to collect and try in peanut butter. He chose the strongest artificial oil soluble grape flavors for … [Read more...]

Mott’s Apple Mango Juice Packs

The juice pack aisle at the grocery store is boring. So, when I saw Mott's 100% juice apple MANGO juice packs, I ignored the $4.88 price tag and grabbed a box to take home. I smiled pushing my cart through the grocery store thinking "finally, a juice pack my kid will be excited about". My daughter only likes apple, mango, mango peach and POG (Passionfruit Orange Guava) juices. The others are "too sour". Therefore, I was hopeful when I asked how she liked the apple mango juice. Not surprisingly, her response was: "it's not very good, do not pack it in my lunch again". Juices with mango in the description that my family finds acceptable include: R.W. Knudsen Family Organic Mango Nectar Langer's Apple Peach Mango Dole Orange … [Read more...]

Scents for Slime

My daughter's classmates call her the "Queen of Slime". They marvel at her "Slime Station"  which I call my formal dining room. This high-ranking "Slime Status" is NOT something I encouraged or welcomed to our home. After all, I am still traumatized by the pink slime disaster, when our recently new soft tan carpet became pink and stiff in parts. And, of course, this disaster was resistant to the carpet steamer and therefore destained to be permanent. Slime making is not only messy, but it takes supplies. Lots of supplies. My daughter uses every last dime of money she receives  or earns in the "slime section" at Target, Michaels or Joann. Of course, I've been forced to adapt to this obsession. I had to buy a new cabinet and bins to store … [Read more...]

Germacrene D fraction and Fig Flavor

I was spoiled growing up. My parents did not buy us things, but they had a garden and orchard. I ate my fill of apricots, asian pears, and prunes right off the tree. Fresh, sweet, flavorful fruit. Often times I'd end up eating 10-20 apricots or prunes in one setting because they were so good. One fruit that I did not over consume was figs. I found fig skins sticky and the seeds odd. Grandma liked them, so I picked them for her and she was delighted.   Now that I have matured, I devour figs and their heavy, sweet floral character. Their aroma is reminiscent of Germacrene-D fraction isolated from Ylang-Ylang available from Treatt. Treatt calls the aroma chemical Germacrene-D fraction, but uses the … [Read more...]

Apricot Tea

On a recent weekend get-away to Victoria, I encountered apricot tea at Murchies Tea & Coffee. Their apricot honey vanilla tea latte is out of this world. We do not have Murchies in the States, so I purchased a box of 50 apricot tea bags to take home with me. That was a mistake, I should have bought a case. Since that day, I have forgone my usual English Breakfast tea for an apricot tea with soy vanilla creamer. Murchie's apricot tea is not too fruity or sour like an herbal tea, but has a sweet, creamy, sweet apricot flavor tea nicely enhanced by black tea flavor. My husband tasted a sip of my apricot honey vanilla tea latte during our visit to Murchies. The sip ended up being "sharing". I did not willingly share, but since he … [Read more...]

Let’s get this Party Started! Birthday Cake Flavor

My youngest daughter is the one that proclaims "let get this party started" when she arrives at birthday party.  This accounts for why she is invited to so many birthday parties and why her favorite flavor is "Birthday Cake". Nothing this kid does is bland. She likes bright color, glitter and flavor. Her room is bright cotton candy pink, she wears neon and loves crazy Aaron's thinking putty. Her favorite Frappuccino flavor is "Birthday Cake"  (if you don't see birthday cake Frappuccino on the standard menu, be sure to ask for it off the "secret menu"). Honestly, I think it's her favorite flavor because of the sprinkles on top, but there is an actual flavor recipe for Birthday Cake Frappuccino . The recipe is a mixture of vanilla bean … [Read more...]

Talking with my Teen: Guavas, Tomatoes, Blueberries and Vegetables

My oldest daughter is officially a teenager. Suppressed memories of my awkward and frightening teenage years have come flooding back. Middle School and High School are times in my life I want to forget. Thankfully, my two dogs, Tippy and Tuffy, helped get me through those years. I hope our cat, Minnie, helps my daughter successfully navigate her middle school years. Communication with my teen daughter is "tense", some reasons  could be: the constant glares I receive when I try to engage; i.e. "the Claire glare" my teen doesn't feel comfortable communicating verbally and expressing feelings my fear of reliving middle school years affects my ability to listen My daughter is able to verbally communicate when she wants me to … [Read more...]

Too Good to be True

I lost my innocence at age 27. It was the day I realized what is on a food label may not really be what is in the food. When the analytical tests showed that the "natural" food flavor I was trying to copy was actually artificial, I was shocked. Now, I look back and think how unreasonable I was. People lie to make money, it exists in every market and food is no exception. When it's too good to be true, it's probably not true. The only way to know if a food flavor has artificial chemicals added is to run an assay on Gas Chromatography (GC), Mass Spectrometer (MS) or perhaps to do Carbon Isotope Testing.  Even then, a person skilled at cheating and lying can may still be able to hide the truth. Although, I've lost my innocence, I'm … [Read more...]

Pomegranate Flavor

I do not get excited about pomegranates. I like them, but they are not special to me. My family has a few pomegranate trees, and I think they are messy and difficult to eat. They make great fall decorations, though. In the late 1970's, my siblings, the neighbor kids and I made an event out of eating pomegranates. Since my  mom didn't want to clean up a huge mess, she forbid us from eating them in the house. She told us to put on our old clothes and go outside when we wanted to "crack open" a pomegranate. We would smash them on a concrete slab, pick out the seeds (arils), gorge and eventually become annoyed by the slow process of eating a pomegranate. Apples and pears, which also ripen in the fall, were much easier to eat and … [Read more...]