Here we have a wonderful cookbook, though so specialized that not all cooks will readily accept it. Yet it’s beautifully produced with gorgeous photo illustrations. Flavor Bombs is written by Adam Fleischman, the chef and owner of many restaurants based on the idea in this cookbook. It’s the umami flavor he is focusing on, using ingredients specifically enriched in umami. As Fleischman claims, this is not only a recipe book but a guide to bringing out flavor bombs in your own dishes. His section on a umami pantry is a must to stock ingredients essential in his dishes. His recipes are excellent, leaning heavily on Japanese cuisine but also drawing from Italian and Mexican. Before undertaking any of the recipes, you must have three umami master recipes on hand: umami master dust, master sauce, and umami ketchup. Many recipes call for one or more of these ingredients. His recipe headnotes are excellent and so are sidebars with good information. Recipe instructions are good, though the layout is a problem with the longer recipes, as you will be paging back and forth. Many ingredients will be hard to find but he gives sources. This cookbook is not for beginner cooks. The index is nicely cross referenced.

Reviewed By: George Erdosh

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