Umami is recognized as the 5th Basic Taste. Taste receptors in the middle of the tongue react to Glutamate, an amino acid indicating the presence of protein in our food. This is the basic Umami taste. Most, if not all, foods have some glutamates present. You might be interested to know that Glutamate is the most abundant amino acid in mother's milk, creating perhaps our first encounter with Umami. Guanylates (GMP) from dried Shiitake intensifies the Umami taste, the Umami Booster.
Umami taste is often mentioned to be savory or leaving a meatiness in your mouth, so it is not really an individual taste but enhances your foods' flavors and the ingredients you used. An after-taste, a long finish of tastes echoing across your tongue and mouth.
"What is Natural Umami"
1) Umami taste, Glutamate, is available in most foods, in varying amounts.
2) Inosinate, the Umami Booster, is also available in many foods (i.e., fish & meats). And Umami is boosted 6x when combined foods with Glutamate.
3) A 3rd Umami called Guanylate boosts the Umami of foods containing Glutimates & Insonates by 30x. Few natural foods have Guanlyates, except Dried Shiitake, which contains the most.
Dried Shiitake can provide the most powerful Natural Umami booster, with or without the taste of the Shiitake itself.
When you use dried Shiitake to cook, you can make the following Glutamate-rich ingredients even more Umami-dense.
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