Sweet and Sour

Appears in

Oxford Companion to Sugar and Sweets

Oxford Companion to Sugar and Sweets

By Darra Goldstein

Published 2015

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sweet and sour is a combination of two basic flavors found in many food cultures. The culinary equivalent of guerilla warfare, it is a gastronomic ambush so pleasurable it makes even seemingly unpalatable foodstuffs taste good. Proof is provided by the food writer Mary Taylor Simeti, who recorded her friend Maria Grammitico’s memories of a dish—veal tripe in agrodolce—served at the conclusion of a wedding feast in Sicily: “Towards midnight you’d eat again … first you make a sauté of garlic, onions and celery … [then] you put in the innards, and then you added a bit of sugar, and when it was time to take it off the fire, you added vinegar.”