The pros: With the right main ingredient, Trader Joe's Umami paste would add some awesome flavor. I've read online that people have mixed it in with bolognese sauce. I've used it in a braise with short ribs.
The cons: There should be some recipes or guides to help you figure out how to use this. Supposedly, according to the package, you need to use this within 28 days.
The verdict: I like the taste, but I believe this is going to be a polarizing item. You'll love it, hate it, or have no idea what to do with it. For a $1.99 there is nothing comparable on the market that will give you the Umami flavor of the same complexity in one bottle. I'm going to pick up an extra bottle in case they discontinue this.
Here is what you can expect if you pick up this item at Trader Joe's:
Here is the tube:
The back of the tube. Be sure to read the ingredients as they are all strong flavors:
A little about this product:
How did I use this? I mixed ½ tsp of the paste, ¼ cup olive oil, and 1 tbsp of grated parmesan cheese to make a bread dip (forgive me for not taking a picture, it wasn't sexy looking, it was ugly. But I ate it all). It was awesome. I'll have to experiment and figure out other uses for this.
Try 1 tube in something with a tomato base to it. See where that goes. I used it in Red Wine Braised Short Ribs Recipe and it was intense and flavorful in ways that tomato paste alone couldn't hope to achieve. I'll post other recipes as I get a chance.
Want to see more items I’ve reviewed from Trader Joe’s? Click on Thoughts & Reviews of Trader Joe’s for a searchable list.
I tried this! Added it to a stir fry. Delish.
So good to know! Thanks for sharing!
msw blog says
Hmm this may become a culinary challenge for me ?.
Totally worth it to give it a go. I'd say start with items that already have a tomato base to them.
Gwen McGill says
I have eaten three tubes of this! Squeeze it on the tip of my finger and lick and repeat. Divine!
I'm bought three tubed as well. I keep stocking up because you never know if they will stop carrying it.
D. Monroe says
I'm trying to figure out why anyone would call that a "bottle".... ????
You're right. It should say tube. Apologies
I bought umami it because I LOVE Trader Joes! Have no idea what to use it in, but I'm looking forward to experimenting with it.
Add it to almost anything that has a tomato base to it. Tomato paste was the strongest flavor I noticed.
We use this regularly and very successfully in stir fries and salad dressing. On our second tube, and our chef son raves about it, really liked it it a beef braise. Highly recommend.
I never thought about adding this to stir fries or salad dressing. Sounds like a great suggestion! I put mine in a beef braise with short ribs. Thanks for the feedback!