The bubbling and boiling away, I could see

The thing I miss most after I came to another territory is the food in China. There’s no single similarity between the procedure of food preparing in the Netherlands and my homeland. And after several complaints to my friends, they started to send me videos of them eating food that are impossible to be found in the Netherlands. I could hear the hot pot bubbling and boiling away, I could see the sliced beef floating up and down, and they looked at me, salivating madly in my mouth, then they would turn off the facetime satisfactorily. Then, instead of unfriend them, I started to reconsider my life in a psychological prospective: this is a classical conditioning in my daily life, the sound is a conditioned stimulus. But what it will be if this stimulus – the sounds from these foods are gone? How they will taste then if we cannot hear the steak buzzing on the plate? Will they be less tasty than a vivid buzzing steak? To my view, the sound would influence the food pleasantness to some extent.


According to Delwiche(CAJ??, 2003), the flavor, smell, warmth and color are important aspects of eating behavior while the sound is of the least importance. However, I presume the sound made by the food itself has considerable impact on the level of rating it. For example, it is surely that you will feel something is wrong without hearing the cracking sound when biting potato chips, Zampini and Spence(2006) pointed out that the perception of crispness and staleness of potato chips would differ if sounds were made during the biting action are not the same, when the cracking sound frequency is high, people perceive these potato chips are preferably more crispy even if sounds were manipulated and all chips were actually came from the same package, and in this case they suggested that auditory cues associated with a particular product would affect people’s perception of products qualities. In addition, some more subtle sound, for example, the sound of tea and coffee in our mouths, the sound of chocolate melting in our mouths, were concluded into the field of acoustic tribology, and will cause impacts of eating behavior in the unconsciousness level.


Not only the food itself, but also the sound of packages, like the sound of opening a bottle of champagne, pleasing opening sound would make people feel the taste would be great. And from Brown’s experiment, the sound of opening wax paper wrapped bread was perceived to be fresher than those in cellophane paper. Also, the sound of preparation of food is taken into the variable sound stimuli, from the experiment of Spence and Shank(2010), listening to the sound of frying bacon when eating the bacon and egg sandwich, the sandwich was considered to be majorly bacon flavored, and if hearing chickens or boiling egg, the sandwich was therefore considered to be majorly egg flavored.


As normal as they may sound in our daily life, that is how people were taught to perceive, therefore, the generalization of experiments seems to be not that convincing. However, it is explained by a theory called cross-modal correspondence, the consistent mappings from the sensory stimulus showed by Crisinel and Spence(2011), also they had proven it by speeded classification paradigm, which required the participants to focus on only one characteristic, for example, color, shape, and neglect other irrelevant characteristics, and somehow people would be affected by these irrelevant characteristics anyway. Also shown in the journal published by Spence and Piqueras-Fiszman(2015) it was explained with tone painting, when we eat, or only in the situation of eating, brain would take use of experiences, information cue of food will cause strong expectation, so when hearing the steak buzzing, your brain would make you to emerge expectation for its taste, if it reaches the expectation, the rating for this steak would increase, and if it does not reach the expectation, the rating for this steak would decrease.