Monday, November 25, 2013

Umami, the 5th Taste!

In school, I can't recall ever learning about a 5th basic taste called umami, besides the sweet, sour, salty and bitter tastes. Given that 'umami' was only formally recognised as the 5th basic taste in 1985, I guess our text books would have to take a few more decades to record the updated information (I have yet to peruse the current text books to spot the updates).

It is interesting that from a very young age, most of us who've been little kitchen helpers of our moms would have heard her say that we need to add in enough meat to a soup or a stew in order for the dish to have a meaty sweetness or roundness taste to it. And all this while I never knew that that taste was the umami taste - difficult to put into words but all of us know what it is.