Flavor Trends, Strategies and Solutions for Menu Development

Boost the Umami In his Umami Tuna Poke, Chad Lance finds that balance by replacing soy sauce with Monin® Umami Concentrated Flavor

Umami Tuna Poke with sambal, garlic, Umami Concentrated Flavor and toasted sesame seeds

One of the reasons poke is seeing so much menu success is that it’s got craveability locked into its lean and fresh profile. Executing the right balance of flavor every time is so important here. In his Umami Tuna Poke, Chad Lance, Director of Culinary Innovation for Monin, finds that balance by replacing soy sauce with Monin® Umami Concentrated Flavor.

“You get that flavor impact of soy sauce, but with more control and less sodium,” he says. “It hits your taste receptors and has that craveability factor going on.” The poke build sees sushi-grade tuna marinated in canola oil, sambal, garlic, toasted sesame seeds and Monin’s Umami Concentrated Flavor.

“The poke tastes salty, savory, fresh and bright, and the results are the same each time because of the consistency from the product.” Lance is excited about its versatility, too. “Add a few drops of the Umami Concentrated Flavor to a mayonnaise or ketchup for depth and savoriness for topping burgers or as a dipping sauce for fries,” he says.

Consistency of flavor adds value to Monin’s line of Concentrated Flavors, which now includes Jalapeño, Oak Barrel, Pineapple, Blueberry and Rosemary, to name just a few. And the entire line of 21 flavors boasts pure flavor without sweetness—no added sugar or artificial sweeteners. Made with the highest quality ingredients and natural flavors, this line offers clean and customizable flavor solutions for culinary and beverage applications.

“We’re excited about the potential for the Jalapeño—both in the kitchen and behind the bar,” says Darren Loscalzo, Monin’s VP of Innovation. “Consistency is so important with chile peppers—you need to get the same amount of heat each time. With the Jalapeño Concentrated Flavor, you get that pepper sweetness along with a prickle of heat at the end. It’s great in margaritas, daiquiris and mojitos.”

Another intriguing flavor is Oak Barrel, which offers a smoky, woodsy note. “It adds the characteristics of a barrel-aged cocktail, and it works really well with bourbon, mezcal, even gin,” says Loscalzo. “The best thing about the Monin Concentrated Flavor line is that just a small amount gives you a great flavor impact. You can replace fresh ingredients with flavor and get both authenticity and consistency.”

From the May/June 2017 ‘Best of…’ issue of Flavor & the Menu magazine. Read the full issue online or check if you qualify for a free print subscription.

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