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UMAMI: What is it? And how to get it.

Umami is a loanword from Japan that has become a global buzzword in recent years. The accepted definition is ‘a pleasant savory taste’, said to be one of the 5 basic tastes; the others being sweet, sour, bitter and salty. The ingredients in this tube, which I bought in Williams Sonoma ($10), are: tomato paste, garlic, salted anchovy, sunflower seed oil, black olives, balsamic vinegar, Porcini mushrooms, Parmesan cheese, citric acid, olive oil, wine vinegar, sugar, salt.

I think I’ve been creating umami food since long before I ever heard the word. The ingredients are familiar, individually and in combination, to the FOODalogue kitchen so I doubt I’d buy a second tube (though it’s good). Like many other things (flavored salts, sugars, vinegars, oils, etc.), once you know the ingredients, it’s easy to make your own. However, it is convenient to have it all in one tube and I wanted to share the product and also take the mystery out of umami.

More information about this product here.

Grilled Summer Squash with Mediterranean Olive Filling

FOODalogue bulletin: Hear ye, hear ye … I followed a recipe. And it’s a good one that I’m happy to share. Continue Reading

Breakfast Grilled Cheese

Yum, yum, yum! Continue Reading

A Dash of This, That and The Other Thing

A totally random post…a Vietnamese dish and two book reviews for foodies. Continue Reading

Eating PURPLE: Asparagus and Potatoes from Peru

Don’t you just love when you spot something beautiful and different in the market?

That’s how I felt when I saw these purple asparagus from Peru. I had to try them. And what better accompaniment than purple potatoes? Continue Reading

Wine Wednesday

Instead of Wordless Wednesday, this week I give you WINE WEDNESDAY.

You should know from the start that I’m sort of a wine snob.

I know what I like.

I just don’t always know why.

So I’m not a connoisseur. Hell, no! After many wine tastings and classes, I understand ‘finish’ and ‘legs’ but when we get into identifying aroma and notes, I’m lost.  “Bottoms up” becomes my motto.  I just go for the gusto.

Continue Reading

Calamari, Inky Pasta + Meyer Lemon

This is a simply prepared dish. I know it won’t appeal to every palate, but what does?

However, if you’re a fan of calamari and things from the sea…if you’re a pasta lover…if you’re looking for something different to serve up, this one is for you! Continue Reading

Pasta + Potatoes!

I wish I could say this high-carb dish was fuel for the marathon I was running the following day. I can’t.

However, you might find the path to its development interesting. And, if you follow that path, you’ll be rewarded with recipes from 2 blogs.

Let me give you the back-story. Continue Reading

Piquillo Red Rice, Jumbo Shrimp, Goya + Me

I’ll never get an award for brand loyalty. You might say I’m commercially fickle. I fly whichever airline will get me there in the least amount of time for the least amount of dollars. I lease a car just so I can try a different manufacturer and model every 3 years. I buy whatever detergents and other staples attract my eye or are on sale. And, of course, I’m always on to the next and newest brand of anything. There are very few products that I’ve remained true to over the years — and they’re all Goya. Continue Reading

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