Synopses & Reviews
"There are recipes inside, but this is not a cookbook. It is an exploration of taste shared between a biophysicist and a chef of the fifth mode of taste, 'Umami.' From tracing the roots of the 'savory, complex, and wholly distinct' concept in Eastern Asia to its widespread popularity and acceptance as a distinct taste in the world, this is a book meant for those interested in food as a mix of art and science. With multiple chapters and sections on the biology, chemistry, and physiology of taste, this book is all about balance. Maintaining equilibrium between sensors on the tongue and the ingredients composing a dish to allow for the greatest culinary experience, the science behind why we enjoy our food is highlighted through specific recipes that feature 'Umami,' the last little punch that pulls a complete dish together to make it savory and fulfilling. For example, the way to make the perfect Japanese dashi or the correct method to employ seaweed and konbu, 'the motherload of umami,' are all there to help inform the reader on how to use mind and ingredients to enhance the sense of deliciousness present in a meal. There are recipes throughout the book see 'Oysters au gratin with a crust of nutritional yeast and smoked shrimp head powder' or 'Deep-fried eggplants with miso (nasu dengaku)' but these are there in order to help highlight the power of umami. This book, then, is not just for people who want to know how to make things taste good, but why things taste good. (Apr.)" Publishers Weekly Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.