Umami in a tube
If you want to boost the umami factor in your cooking, you could add mushrooms, cheese or meat. Or you could reach for a tube.
British supermarkets this month began selling tubes of umami paste made of "pulped anchovies and porcini mushrooms," London's Daily Mail reports. Taste No. 5 is meant to satisfy the fifth sense of taste. A little tube costs about $4.50.
"Named Taste No. 5, evoking the allure of a high-class perfume, it triggers the sensation of delight in the brain when at least one of the primary tastes of sweet, sour, bitter and salty is also present," the newspaper reports.
Until No. 5 makes its way to this side of the pond, we'll have to make do with a dab of MSG behind the ears.
Umami the old-fashioned way, from mushrooms and tamari. Chicago Tribune photo by Bill Hogan.