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Which foods are high in umami ("savoriness") and how can I cook them to maximize the umami taste?

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closed as too broad by rumtscho Dec 30 '15 at 20:45

There are either too many possible answers, or good answers would be too long for this format. Please add details to narrow the answer set or to isolate an issue that can be answered in a few paragraphs.If this question can be reworded to fit the rules in the help center, please edit the question.

Seems kind of open-ended to me... I'm not really sure how people are supposed to answer this. – Aaronut Jul 19 '10 at 14:08
you are probably right Aaronut, I saw it mentioned in another post and it got me wanting to know... – Sam Holder Jul 19 '10 at 14:14
Too broad to be really answerable. – JSBձոգչ Jul 19 '10 at 15:33
Shall I delete this? There are no votes to close yet.... – Sam Holder Jul 19 '10 at 16:40
I don't think you'll be able to delete it with upvoted answers. I guess it's okay, as a wiki; at least it introduces a concept that some people may not know [much] about. 'Course, the entire thread needs to be wikified, not just the question. – Aaronut Jul 20 '10 at 1:06
up vote 15 down vote accepted

Umami comes from a very specific source: Glutamates and glutamic acid. MSG is a glutamate, so it is one of the best ways to add a bit of umami.

Meat, Kombu seaweed (used to make Dashi, and hence Dashi), mushrooms, onions, cheeses, soy and other beans, most high-protein foods.

Here is a quick list. Most are prepared foods, but it should give you an idea.

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Marmite / Vegemite contain autolyzed yeast extract, which is a very high source of umami. These spreads are therefore also great for bringing out savory flavours.

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  • Anchovies
  • Parmesan cheese
  • Fish
  • Meat
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The insides of Tomato's are high. Heston Blumanthal has a recipe for Tomatoe Ketchup that makes use of this.

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Salting tomatoes really brings it out, too. – ceejayoz Jul 19 '10 at 15:02

Miso. Yummy, too.

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