Food & Drink

Laura Santtini's Easy, Tasty, Magic Umami Paste Recipes

Cut and Paste

taste no. 5!

It’s hard to put your finger on that something something that is umami — and equally difficult to get your hands on Taste No. 5, umami paste in a tube — until now. The Parmesany, anchovyish, olive-meets-garlic, tomato-based porcini balsamicness from London food writer Laura Santtini’s larder has arrived. It’ll be your secret ingredient for soups, stews, pastas, and sauces. We won’t tell.

Can’t wait? Make one of the paste recipes from her book, Easy Tasty Italian. Just mix all the ingredients using a hand blender. Then store, covered with a film of oil, in the refrigerator for up to a week.

Garlic, Sweet Basil, and Almond Paste
Great with legumes; try it with lentil soup.

½ oz. fresh basil leaves
Pinch of salt flakes
½ garlic clove
1 oz. whole blanched almonds, toasted
½ tsp. fennel seeds
½ lemon, zested and juiced
1½ tbsp. extra-virgin olive oil

Rose, Pomegranate, and Mint Paste
Works with anything from pasta to poultry.

½ oz. fresh mint leaves
½ lime, zested and juiced
1 tbsp. dried rose petals
2 tsp. pomegranate seeds, fresh or dried
½ tsp. pomegranate molasses
1 oz. pistachio nuts, shelled
½ oz. feta cheese
½ tsp. pink peppercorns
1 tbsp. olive oil
Pinch of salt flakes
Ground black pepper

Flavor bombs away.

Taste No. 5 umami paste available online at kalustyans.com and amazon.com, $9-$15. Easy Tasty Italian available online at amazon.com, $18. For more ideas on making things more delicious, go to laurasanttini.com.

Photo: Courtesy of Laura Santtini

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