Culture TED Conferences

The oomph of umami: Barb Stuckey at TED2013

Posted by: Thu-Huong Ha
Photos: James Duncan Davidson

Photos: James Duncan Davidson

You think your food tastes good, but food inventor Barb Stuckey thinks you could be doing better. In her book, Taste What You’ve Been Missing, Stuckey explores the science of what, exactly, what makes food taste good — and what doesn’t.

Which brings us today to: Uuuuumami! (That’s oo-ma-mee.) What is umami? That rich, brothy flavor without which tomatoes, soy sauce, sushi, mushrooms and hamburgers just wouldn’t be the same. Umami is the delicious savory fifth taste after sweet, sour, bitter and salty.

To really appreciate food, Stuckey says, it’s important to understand exactly what you taste. After all, it’s the balance of the 5 basic tastes that creates the perfect dish.

TED2013_0049047_D31_2862Try some taste exercises on Barb’s blog >>