Poison Study by Maria V. Snyder
Yelena, the main character, gets a choice between being hung for the crime of murder or being the new food tester for the Commander of Ixia right before she is to be executed. She chooses to become a food taster, and the training she goes through is what the book is mostly about.
The interactions Yelena has with her "mentor" and the actual training are the best part of this book although the side characters Janco and Ari are amusing. I hope to see more of them in the later books.
There are some hints of magic, but it doesn't take center stage as the world they are in is opposed to magic and for the most part it seems to be an aside to the lessons, which may or may not have a bigger role in later books.
The writing style is not bad, but there is a certain lack of depth and the pacing was a bit faster than I would have liked.