If you’ve read my blog for any length of time or know me on a personal level, you’ll know that I’m not a sweets person. You can tempt me all day long with your donuts or cupcakes, but try and take a fry off my plate or think that those potato chips you brought for lunch are just yours… I will throw down. Salty, rich foods are my jam and I will take seconds (or thirds) especially if there’s a bit of spice added.
It should be no surprise to you that I was instantly attracted to the Flavor Bombs cookbook when I went to my public library recently. I mean, it says on the cover, “UMAMI INGREDIENTS THAT MAKE TASTE EXPLODE” so clearly I was in the right place. If you’re uncertain what the term umami means, it’s basically a rich or savory flavor. Umami is described as being one of the 5 basic tastes, along with sour, bitter, salty and sweet. Think mushrooms or a rich beef broth… yum!
Now that I’ve lived with the Flavor Bombs cookbook for long enough to have had to check it out again twice, here are my thoughts:
This cookbook is full of totally unique, extremely creative and delicious looking recipes
Every recipe I’ve made has been amazing
You will very likely not have most of the ingredients in your pantry
You must plan ahead for the recipes, as many of them require another sauce or dressing from within the cookbook
So in conclusion, know that if you buy this cookbook you won’t be flipping it open on a Wednesday night at 6 and just throwing together one of the recipes because you happen to have all the ingredients. This is a plan ahead cookbook, where many ingredients will be difficult to find especially if you don’t live near some good Asian markets. For the umami master sauce, I chose to buy many of the ingredients on Amazon since I wouldn’t be near our Asian market anytime soon.
Additionally, it’s not inexpensive to buy the ingredients, although I’m sure it would have been less expensive to pick them up at the Asian market instead of Amazon. I spent $30 buying ingredients for the Umami Master Sauce from this cookbook. I went for it though, since many of the recipes within the cookbook use this sauce.
So what exactly is the master sauce? Well, it’s a rich, umami sauce that can be used just as any other staple in your fridge. If I had to compare it to something, I’d say it’s like a combination of hoisin and Worcestershire sauce. The Umami Master Sauce is simple to make after you have all the ingredients and keeps in the fridge for up to 6 months. It’s really delicious and we’ve bombed through our jar in a matter of weeks. We’ve loved this sauce on everything from steak to stir fry, fried rice and, of course, burgers. Like this awesome umami burger with blue cheese truffle sauce… heaven!