Book Review: How to Taste

What is umami and why do we need to know about it? If you’re a foodie you probably know that umami is a Japanese word that describes a savory, meaty taste. The word itself translates as “delicious taste.” There has been a slew of books in the past few years that go beyond recipes to teach cooks and eaters about the flavor and taste elements that contribute to great food – like Samin Nosrat’s Salt Fat Acid Heat (be sure to check out her Netflix miniseries).

Becky Selengut’s How to Taste is a deep dive into the elements of taste that cooks can adjust to create a fabulous dish. She analyzes ten elements such as sweet, bitter, aromatics, bite (think chili peppers) and texture. Each chapter summarizes research on that taste and provides recipes. An interesting feature is “Experiment Time” where she challenges readers to develop their palates.

I haven’t tried any of the recipes (yet), but Fiery Roasted Thai Chile Chicken Wings sure sounds good.

Check out How to Taste!


By Diane