According to researchers, there’s a lot more to ‘taste’ than meets the tongue!
Buddha bowls, burrito bowls, smoothie bowls – the trend to serve up food in a bowl seems to be spreading far and wide.
But did you know that it’s not just the latest café styling trend – RIP doilies – but a scientifically proven fact that food tastes better eaten from a bowl?
According to Professor Charles Spence, researcher in experimental psychology at Oxford, we are constantly forming expectations around the food we eat based on context clues.
Food eaten from porcelain dishes with metal cutlery will “taste better” than the exact same food plucked from a flimsy plastic container by hand while sitting at a rickety table in a food court.
Bowls in particular, explains Professor Spence, create the expectation that the food inside will be hearty, comforting and fulfilling.
‘That weight in the hand is likely to make your brain think the food is more substantial and you’re likely to rate it as more intensely fragranced and aromatic than for exactly the same food sat passively on a plate,’ he told Quartzy.
Also, we will apparently enjoy our bowl food even more if we hold the bowl with one hand and eat with the other – especially if the food is warm.
‘There is research out there showing that if you feel something warm in your hand the world looks like a better place,’ explains Professor Spence.
So if you’re feeling a bit ‘meh’ about your lunch today, consider whacking it in a bowl and heating it up. Chances are it will ‘taste’ better, and the world will feel a little nicer.