Category Archives: apple

Foodpairing recipes based on different types of wood smoke

Continuing the bbq frenzy, in this article we’ll give you a sneak preview of some recipes we’ve designed based on the analysis of wood smoke.

We at Foodpairing® recently analyzed the smoke of different types of wood: apple, pear, cherry wood chips and grape vines. At first glance all woods have similar intensity and aroma profile, yet each smoke has its own specific character.
The apple wood smoke tends to be spicier than the rest, with clove and allspice flavours. The cherry smoke is characterized by its chocolate and peach themes. The pear smoke holds the middle between the cherry and apple, both containing the spicy and chocolate directions, with hints of boiled vegetables. The grape vine smoke is more savory than the rest. This information may help when selecting the right smoke for your recipes.

Smoking products requires a bit of skill, but once mastered it is not really that challenging. So we went looking for alternative ways to smoke and came up with two other for which you don’t need a barbeque.

  • Smoking in a smoke pot on the stove
  • Smoking in a grill oven

When using a smoke port, make sure the chips are not too large, saw dust actually works the best. Place the empty smoke pot on the heat. Put in the wood chips when the pot is hot. As soon as the first smoke has disappeared, one can start adding ingredients on the grill above the smoldering wood.

When smoking in a standard grill oven, it is best to moisten the wood chips before use, as you would do on a barbeque. Water can be used for that purpose, but other liquids may be used for added dimensions. Check the Foodpairing Explorer for inspiration. Why not moisten your apple wood chips with apple juice?
Wrap the soaked wood chips in aluminum foil and place under the grill. As soon as the smoke begins to develop (which may take some time), put in the products to smoke.

Please observe that virtually any ingredients can be smoked. Though traditionally meats and fishes are smoked, excellent results may be achieved when smoking vegetables, fruits or even liquids or dairy.

Here is a preview of the “smoke” recipes that will come online.

pear wood smoked mackrel – avocado – bergamote

grape vines grilled and smoked chicken – fava beans – apple

cherry wood chip smoked orange peel – carrot – white chocolate – mascarpone

apple wood smoke black olive served with a classic Dry Martini


Beer and Foodpairing: Ommegang Charles Quint

In this article we’ll give you some flavor inspiration for designing recipes that combine well with this excellent beer. Also we’ll dive into a couple of home-grown recipes we designed to beer and Foodpairing the Ommegang Keizer Karel.

Three hops are used during the production process giving the beer its delicate yet complex aroma. Flowery, fruity, spicy and citrusy aromas are equally perceived, without overloading the beer. Its multi dimensional character is reflected in the Foodpairing tree of Ommegang Keizer Karel, it grants a lot of Foodpairing potential to this beer.

The subtle spiciness in the beer is mainly attributed to the chosen yeast strain tasked to ferment the beer. This flavor can also be found in asparagus and vanilla (find them in the Ommegang Foodpairing tree). These simple links gave us the spark to create two amiable food companions. With the aid of the Foodpairing Explorer we filled in the blanks. Add Ommegang and asparagus to your combo box. Then search for fitting ingredients and be inspired. Keep in mind that you can use the beer in your recipe, but it also can be served on the side.


Here’s what we came up with.

Asparagus – Cream Cheese – Shrimp

Starting from the Ommegang – asparagus combo in the Foodpairing Explorer, we hopped to cream cheese, having some lactone aromas in common with the beer and the asparagus. Next we selected bread, which will link in the fruity theme.

Find the recipe here.


Apple – lemon – vanilla – pistachio

This dish emphasizes the fruity and citrusy character of the beer that is served on the side. Sparked by the vanilla match, we searched for appropriate fruits. The beer contains a lot of aroma molecules that can be found in apples and lemons, so we decided to go with these two ingredients. That leaves us vanilla, apples and lemon; it is a small task to come up with a matching dessert with these ingredients so common, so go wild…

Find our recipe here.

Surprising macaron flavors

Chefs & pastry chefs are always on the lookout for thoughtful treats to serve with coffee. Be inspired by Foodpairing to design the perfect macaron match to your favorite coffee. We’ve designed some macaron recipes around Café del Cauca, a Colombian coffee.

Macaron fillings come in every color and flavor, but are flavourwise generally limited to fruits, herbs and spices. Use Foodpairing to break with this convention; a cucumber or cheese filling are actually not so farfetched and only a few clicks away in the Foodpairing Explorer. The famous macaron of Pierre Hermé with rose, raspberry and lychee is in fact a very strong Foodpairing combination.

Not only the filling may be subjected to Foodpairing®. The macaron itself has ample space for flavor innovation. Why not replace the almond powder with hazelnut or pistachio? Another trick would be to produce your own flavoured egg white by combining egg white powder and any flavoured liquid (again, use Foodpairing to pick the right flavour). This is really a great way to incorporate new flavours in the macaron without compromising its delicate structure. For our Cucumber macaron, we used coffee to make our flavoured egg white.

Check out our recipes!

Hazelnut macaron with  yoghurt ganache, raspberry and tarragon

  • 250 g white chocolate 33%
  • 125 g yoghurt
  • 80 g butter
  • 25 sugar

Heat the yoghurt and sugar to 60 °C, then pour on the chocolate while stirring. Mix thoroughly. Cool to 35 °C and mix in the butter. Let crystallize.

Coffee macaron with cucumber-apple ganache and cilantro

  • 75 g cucumber-apple-cilantro juice
  • 5 g of sugar
  • 200 g white chocolate 33%
  • 65 g butter

Heat the juice with the sugar to 60 °C. Pour on the chocolate while stirring. Mix thoroughly. Cool to 35 ° C and mix in the butter. Let crystallize.


Creativity for new hotdog recipes

Foodpairing(R) is not only applied in top restaurants, our creativity tool can also be used to create new recipes for e.g. hotdog.

We have members applying Foodpairing(R) in all sorts of places. In Belgium we have e.g. places that sell french fries (called ‘frietkot’) that apply Foodpairing(R) to increase the potato experience. For a fair we created new Foodpairing(R) combinations based on classic hamburgers and hotdog.

As an example we made a variation on a hotdog, starting from chicken sausage.

If you check the Foodpairing(R) tree of chicken, you can find combinations like pumpkin, apple,…

Hotdog: Chicken – Pumpkin-apple ketchup – tomato confit


335 g pumpkin (peeled)
145g Granny Smith
80 g onion
5 g garlic
thyme and bayleaf
200 g water
25 g sugar
15 g aigre-doux (50 g of caramelized sugar quenched with 10 g of white wine vinegar)
1 g cornstarch
20 g water
curry powder
8 cherry tomatoes
olive oil
some sprigs of thyme
4 chicken sausages
4 hot dog buns
salt and pepper

Dice the pumpkin, Granny Smith, onion and garlic. Braise in olive oil with thyme and bay leaf. Quench with water and cook until tender. Blend when the water is almost completely evaporated.

Add sugar, aigre-doux and curry powder. Bring back to a boil and add the cornstarch water mixture while stirring. Allow to boil, then cool down and season to taste with curry powder, salt, pepper and other spices.

Halve the cherry tomatoes. Season with salt and pepper, cover with sprigs of thyme and drizzle with olive oil. Put in a preheated oven of 180 °C.

Fry the chicken sausages.

The other recipes for hamburgers you can find here


Woodsy flavors are hot! Wood smoke flavor chart

Smoke signals, an article by the Wall Street Journal, points at the growing frequency of smoke to the dessert menu.
We also noticed it by requests of chefs to add different types of smoke to our database.
This Foodpairing tree (a wood smoke flavor chart) will give you some inspiration about where wood smoke makes a good match, more specific types of wood will follow in the future. All the ingredients around the center can be matched with wood smoke.

E.g. Bourbon icecream tart with bacon and smoked salt by Craigie on Main. In the Foodpairing tree you see vanilla (in the group of herbs and spices) very close to the middle of the chart. This indicates it is a very good match, but you will also find bacon, chocolate, coffee, rooibos tea…



Belvedere has a new vodka out; Bloody Mary a blend of their premium vodka with macerations of 7 essentials ingredients of the Bloody Mary; black pepper-horseradish-bell pepper-tomato-chili-vinegar-lemon.
For The London Cocktail week, we developed 2 types of barfood to complement the drink. One of the combinations was Bayonne ham-apple-celery-honey-yoghurt-licorice based on the Foodpairing tree of Belvedere Bloody Mary;

Recipe and the other barfood you can find here.


Epicurious added a post on pairing cocktails with food, which is an idea we support of course. Ryan Magarian proposed the combination of his Apple sidecar and a grilled romaine lettuce with bacon, apple, and blue cheese (Roquefort) vinaigrette and a sidecar made with apple brandy

Well let’s check how this Foodpairing is constructed;

The recipe of the Apple sidecar;
1 1/2 oz Vodka
1/2 oz Apple brandy
1 oz Lemon juice
1 oz Simple syrup
1/2 oz Tangerine juice
1 pn Tangerine peel (shredded, as garnish)

Shake, strain, straight up, chilled sugar-rimmed cocktail glass


Next to the Flemish Foodies there is now also the Belgian Barflies featuring Olivier Jacobs, Erik Veldhuis and Ben Wouters. Happy to see there is more and more activity in the cocktail scene in Belgium.

Here the Foodpairing tree of Apple linked to a general profile of Tequila (any tequila company interested to make a Foodpairing analysis on their product?) to make the link with the other ingredients;

Here the movie of the cocktail by Ben Wouters;

Piña pepiño – Ben Wouters (Belgian Barflies) from piet de kersgieter on Vimeo.


While reading the website of Starchefs, I came across some Rum cocktails easy to explain by Foodpairing;
- Rum, apple, clove and lemon (Mixologist and Co-owner Johnny Santiago of Jo’s – New York, NY)

- Rum, bell pepper, limonade (Mixologist Eben Freeman of Tailor – New York, NY)

Looking to the Foodpairing tree of Havana Rum you see all these combinations popping up.

Also classical combinations with Havana Club 7 like the Golden Apple.


To explain better how to use the tool, we will publish recipes send to us by chefs worldwide. To start with; a recipe of Kasteel Withof, a Michelin star restaurant in Belgium. If you go to foodpairing and chose rhubarb, you will find that you can combine it with fish (eg Mackerel), apple. So included a recipe with those 3 food products.

Ingredients: Mackerel/Rhubarb/Apple (for 4 persons)

– 4 mackerel 300 gr/piece

- Transglutaminase

– Chuca-vinaigrette: 210 ml soya 150 g sugar 240 ml chicken stock 40 ml sesame oil 25 ml wasabi 190 ml water 80 ml vinegar 65 ml rice vinegar 15 g roasted sesame seeds

– 1 aubergine

– 2 pieces rhubarb

– 4 spoons sugar syrup

– 6 raspberries

– 1 Granny Smith

– roquette

– olive oil pepper and salts


-Mackerel: Clean the filets. Season with pepper and salt.

Coat interior with transglutaminase. Reform the mackerel by putting back the filets on each other.

Shape them with foil into roles. Place in the fridge for minimum 6 hours.

Heat in oven at 55°C with core of 39°C.

Cut the roles in 3 equal parts.

- Aubergine: mix all ingredients for the vinaigrette.

Cut the aubergines in 4 parts and divide each part once again in 3.

Put salt on theses parts and let them stand 30 in the frigde.

Remove salt with water and dap them dry.

Season the pieces aubergines and colour in hot olive oil.

Add the vinaigrette and reduce on a moderate heat.

Keep them warm in the oven.

-Rhubarb: clean and cut rhubarb in equal pieces.

Divide into 2 sous vide bags and add the raspberries and the sugar syrup.

Seal and heat 40 mintes on 90°C.

Was the rocket lettuce

Cut the green apple in thin beams.

Put on each plate 3 pieces aubergine.

Add the mackerel and rhubarb, lettuce and apple.

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