This is why you should be cooking lamb with dark chocolate instead of mint

When cooking lamb, most of us automatically reach for mint as the main seasoning. But a new study has revealed that there are three other unusual flavours we should be mixing with our meat instead if we want to get the best out of it.

lamb dark chocolate
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As reported by The Independentresearch from Simply Beef & Lamb has revealed that dark chocolate, coffee and mackerel are the ultimate seasonings for a lamb dish. Yes, really!

This is because these ingredients were found to be the most compatible tastes with lamb after researchers looked at the molecular make-up of the meat in order to identify foods that share similar flavour compounds.

Their results also found that other surprising foods such as shrimp, whiskey, brie, peanuts, potatoes and grapefruit were also compatible flavours when cooking lamb, though dark chocolate and coffee turned out to be the strongest. Who would have thought, eh?

Food scientist and flavour expert Dr Rachel Edwards-Stuart, who teamed up with Simply Beef & Lamb for the study, explained the unusual suggested partnerships, saying: ‘While many of these ingredients are common in cooking, people can often be afraid to put bold flavours together.’

lamb dark chocolate
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He continued: ‘This research shows that the traditional pairings of rosemary or mint may not be the best food to bring out all of the flavours lamb has to offer. People can therefore afford to be a bit bolder in their choices.’

As well as swapping out the mint for dark chocolate, which shares the greatest similarities with cooked lamb, the study also suggests that whisky is a better alcoholic pairing than the usual glass of red wine we tend to have.

This is because both red wine and whiskey (though more so the latter) have an aroma which contains cocoa and almond notes – two flavours that compliment the taste of lamb.