Posts Tagged ‘smells’

I’ve been reading Molly Birnbaum’s fascinating memoir, Season to Taste: How I Lost My Sense of Smell and Found My Way. Birnbaum was studying to be a chef before she was in a car accident, which injured her severely and wiped out her sense of smell. By extension, she lost much of her sense of taste – food became a bland texture in her mouth for many months.

Reading Birnbaum’s story has made me wonder about the tastes I would miss most – so here they are:

1. Fresh fruit, especially raspberries, blackberries and peaches.
2. The spicy, fruity or earthy flavors of my favorite teas.
3. The rich, dark, slightly fruity tang of dark chocolate.
4. Sweet spices like cinnamon and nutmeg.
5. Peanut butter.
6. Spiced apple cider.
7. Fresh tomatoes and basil, preferably with mozzarella.
8. The savor of tomato salsa – particularly made by my friend Nate.
9. The smoky flavor of mesquite-grilled chicken.
10. Cookies, scones, etc. – both the dough and the finished product.
11. My favorite savory soups – tomato, butternut squash, jalapeno and more.
12. Guacamole, with salty tortilla chips.
13. Any sort of Tex-Mex food, really.
14. The complex spicy mixture of Indian food.

What are your favorite tastes? What would you miss most, if you lost them?


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1. Damp earth after a rain.
2. Woodsmoke on a cold night.
3. The Leaves candle, from B&BW.
4. Banana Republic Classic perfume, which I started wearing because my mom wore it. So elegant.
5. Coffee perking (though I won’t drink it).
6. Cinnamon tea brewing. (I will drink this, gladly!)
7. Fresh buttered popcorn.
8. My husband after a shower. Mmmm.
9. Ripe peaches, dripping with juice.
10. Sweet treats baking in the oven. (A combination of butter-sugar-chocolate-yum.)
11. Mesquite-grilled chicken (sadly rare around here).
12. Old books.
13. Pepperminty lip gloss.
14. Curry.
15. Spring flowers with a subtle scent – tulips, daffodils.
16. Boston’s North End – garlic, butter, pasta, heaven.
17. Apple cider simmering on the stove.
18. Fresh-picked basil.
19. Pine needles.
20. Vanilla – so wholesome and sweet.
21. Citrus fruit.
22. Towels fresh from the dryer.
23. Salty sea air.
24. Soup simmering – tomato, Tuscan sausage, butternut squash, jalapeno, chili. The smell of spice and nourishment.

What do you love to smell?

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