A breakdown of the mysterious “fifth” taste-Umami

How did we discover Umami?

Ever felt like you were having a tough time coherently establishing what a certain flavour is? If yes, then you are definitely not alone. Technically speaking, the human tongue is said to recognize four distinct flavors, i.e, sweet, sour, salty and bitter, however in the late 19th century, a Japanese chemist came close to deciphering the mysterious nature of our fifth taste.

What is Umami?

That’s how we came to name any taste that does not fall within the category of the major four we mentioned before. In a literal meaning, the word translates to “pleasant, savory taste” or “yummy.” When foods age, are cooked, the protein molecule L-glutamate goes through a serious change on a molecular level. When these are broken down,  we are left with that distinct Umami taste.

What are some prominent Umami foods?

1. Beef

Source; The Independent

2. Tomatoes

Source; BBC

3. Mushrooms

Source; Food Revolution Network

4. Chicken

Source;Today Show

5. Soy

Source; Men’s Health

6. Green Tea

Source; TeaFloor

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