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Alternatives to my tamari rut?

Answered on August 19, 2014
Created February 15, 2011 at 5:04 PM

After seeing it recommended somewhere on the paleosphere, it seems like I'm adding tamari to almost all of my animal protein these days...which is probably getting excessive since tamari is based on fermented soy.

Help me bust out of my tamari rut. What are some versatile foolproof condiments that you use to punch up your animal proteins?

32f5749fa6cf7adbeb0b0b031ba82b46

(41747)

on May 16, 2012
at 04:40 AM

I season nearly all my beef with fish sauce, it's good stuff, adds a nice complex flavor.

A4216f1b1e1f5ab3815bd91700905081

(1646)

on May 16, 2012
at 02:51 AM

Yep, anchovies are an umami source. So is dried kelp.

A4216f1b1e1f5ab3815bd91700905081

(1646)

on May 16, 2012
at 02:50 AM

Don't forget Bonito flakes and kelp granules!

9d43f6873107e17ca4d1a5055aa7a2ad

on February 18, 2011
at 12:29 AM

Yipes, make sure you keep coco aminos in fridge...mine turned to alcohol :( FG, my latest blog post has vinegar info, I usually add before or during cookng.

5672b2d190891342389e764cc4056ca9

(1304)

on February 16, 2011
at 11:26 AM

Anchovies are easy to use and go well with everything. But if you have patience you can experiment with many other umami-taste ingredients: DRY MUSHROOMS, i.e. shiitake and porcini (add them to soups, sauces, braised meats); SUNDRIED TOMATOES (for souces, braised meats); PARMESAN crust (just add to slow cooking meat some parmesan cheese crust, which you would normally throw away: scrape it with a knife first. I know it's not "paleo", you can always toss it after cooking, the taste will still be in the sauce); DRY SCALLOPS/CONPOY (in Asian markets, expensive, good in soups and souces).

5672b2d190891342389e764cc4056ca9

(1304)

on February 16, 2011
at 04:51 AM

Anchovies are the easy route to add taste, and they go well with everything. But if you have patience you can experiment with many other umami-taste ingredients: SHIITAKE MUSHROOMS (add them to soups, sauces, braised meats); SUNDRIED TOMATOES (for souces, braised meats); PARMESAN crust (just add to slow cooking meat some parmesan cheese crust, which you would normally throw away: scrape it with a knife first. I know it's not "paleo", you don't need to eat it, if you don't want, but it gives lots of taste); DRY SCALLOPS/CONPOY (in Asian markets, expensive, good in soups and souces).

5672b2d190891342389e764cc4056ca9

(1304)

on February 16, 2011
at 03:41 AM

Any brand would do; right now I have the brand "L'isola d'oro" in my pantry. I've never seen them preserved under seed oil, but you may want to keep an eye on that. Even in this case, you don't really use the oil, only the anchovy. They are mostly produced in Italy, Spain, and other Mediterranean countries, and come either in glass jars or tins. They are very savory, you cannot eat them as you would eat canned tuna or sardines, think of "condiment" rather than "fish".

D30ff86ad2c1f3b43b99aed213bcf461

on February 16, 2011
at 03:26 AM

They DO sound delicious. Do you typically add vinegar(s) before or after cooking?

D30ff86ad2c1f3b43b99aed213bcf461

on February 16, 2011
at 03:26 AM

I definitely enjoy Worchestershire sauce; will be on the lookout for an HFCS-free one.

D30ff86ad2c1f3b43b99aed213bcf461

on February 16, 2011
at 03:25 AM

I've never bought anchovies but you are sure tempting me! :) Any particular brands that you'd recommend trying?

D30ff86ad2c1f3b43b99aed213bcf461

on February 16, 2011
at 03:24 AM

Yes, I am such a fan of umami, if I thought that I could get away with it I'd name a child of mine Umami! Mushrooms, cheeses, asparagus, wasabi, rich broths (like in pho)....mmmmmmm. You're right that I need to track down other fermentation-based condiments. Wonder if the anchovies that Paola suggested also offer up the desired umami??

9d43f6873107e17ca4d1a5055aa7a2ad

on February 16, 2011
at 02:42 AM

I got it at trader joes. I found some other cool vinegars at another store, like fig and peach vinegars.

0bcefaa82dc94f93ce705f86e235f335

(1591)

on February 16, 2011
at 01:59 AM

Oh my goodness, Melissa, that tangerine vinegar thing sounds amazing.

74f5d2ff6567edd456d31dfb9b92af61

(5227)

on February 15, 2011
at 11:29 PM

Aww, I'm sorry to hear that. A sriracha-less life is a sad one indeed. My fella can't do spicy, either -- do you like Worcestershire? It's a bit sweet, and you'd have to dig around to find a brand without HFCS, but a tiny bit goes a long way and it does lend a nice palate to meatloaves, ground mince, and burgers. :)

D30ff86ad2c1f3b43b99aed213bcf461

on February 15, 2011
at 11:21 PM

Wish that I could use sriracha in more marinades and sauces. I have a pretty iron stomach, but unfortunately my husband is terribly sensitive to it.

9d43f6873107e17ca4d1a5055aa7a2ad

on February 15, 2011
at 06:54 PM

Well, everything I put coconut aminos on tastes great. My other foolproof things are tangerine vinegar/rosemary/sea salt/freshly ground pepper or hot chili paste/garlic/lime/tamarind.

5d0283f9cf2480374a0b7df56b7f3d9b

(418)

on February 15, 2011
at 06:05 PM

atomic horseradish is my favorite (unless I make my own which I've done a couple of times when I found horseradish at my local farmer's market). http://www.amazon.com/Atomic-Horseradish-Super-Hot-Jar/dp/B002HG9R1I - it does have a tiny bit of sugar, but other than that I think the ingredients are pretty clean

D30ff86ad2c1f3b43b99aed213bcf461

on February 15, 2011
at 05:53 PM

I guess I'd call tamari foolproof because I've yet to find animal protein that it doesn't make tastier - very compatible with a broad range of foods and hard to overdo?

D30ff86ad2c1f3b43b99aed213bcf461

on February 15, 2011
at 05:51 PM

Ohhhhh good call. I'm pretty sure that all of the bottled horseradishes available at my supermarket have soybean oil integrated (sigh). I do love using wasabi powder on roasted veggies. Any good brands of standard white horseradish to recommend?

D30ff86ad2c1f3b43b99aed213bcf461

on February 15, 2011
at 05:50 PM

Ohhhhh good call. All my supermarket's bottled horseradish has soybean oil integrated (sigh). I do love using wasabi powder on roasted veggies. Any good brands of standard white horseradish to recommend?

9d43f6873107e17ca4d1a5055aa7a2ad

on February 15, 2011
at 05:50 PM

Foolproof how? They are salty and savory, though a little sweeter than soy.

D30ff86ad2c1f3b43b99aed213bcf461

on February 15, 2011
at 05:49 PM

I've read Melissa McEwen lauding coconut aminos lately. Are they salty? Savory? Both? What about coconut aminos makes them so foolproof?

D30ff86ad2c1f3b43b99aed213bcf461

on February 15, 2011
at 05:48 PM

I've read Melissa McEwen laud coconut aminos lately. Are they salty? Savory? Both? What about coconut aminos makes them so foolproof?

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9 Answers

4
58cc17a77bca6e503dcf6bf6471b76a1

(478)

on February 15, 2011
at 05:32 PM

You could use Raw Coconut Amino...google Coconut Secret Coconut Amino..the cheapest i could find is on iherb.com. If you're a first time customer, you can use promo code SUT585 to save $5.00. Shipping is free if you order at least $40.

9d43f6873107e17ca4d1a5055aa7a2ad

on February 15, 2011
at 05:50 PM

Foolproof how? They are salty and savory, though a little sweeter than soy.

9d43f6873107e17ca4d1a5055aa7a2ad

on February 15, 2011
at 06:54 PM

Well, everything I put coconut aminos on tastes great. My other foolproof things are tangerine vinegar/rosemary/sea salt/freshly ground pepper or hot chili paste/garlic/lime/tamarind.

D30ff86ad2c1f3b43b99aed213bcf461

on February 16, 2011
at 03:26 AM

They DO sound delicious. Do you typically add vinegar(s) before or after cooking?

D30ff86ad2c1f3b43b99aed213bcf461

on February 15, 2011
at 05:53 PM

I guess I'd call tamari foolproof because I've yet to find animal protein that it doesn't make tastier - very compatible with a broad range of foods and hard to overdo?

D30ff86ad2c1f3b43b99aed213bcf461

on February 15, 2011
at 05:48 PM

I've read Melissa McEwen laud coconut aminos lately. Are they salty? Savory? Both? What about coconut aminos makes them so foolproof?

9d43f6873107e17ca4d1a5055aa7a2ad

on February 16, 2011
at 02:42 AM

I got it at trader joes. I found some other cool vinegars at another store, like fig and peach vinegars.

D30ff86ad2c1f3b43b99aed213bcf461

on February 15, 2011
at 05:49 PM

I've read Melissa McEwen lauding coconut aminos lately. Are they salty? Savory? Both? What about coconut aminos makes them so foolproof?

9d43f6873107e17ca4d1a5055aa7a2ad

on February 18, 2011
at 12:29 AM

Yipes, make sure you keep coco aminos in fridge...mine turned to alcohol :( FG, my latest blog post has vinegar info, I usually add before or during cookng.

0bcefaa82dc94f93ce705f86e235f335

(1591)

on February 16, 2011
at 01:59 AM

Oh my goodness, Melissa, that tangerine vinegar thing sounds amazing.

3
5d0283f9cf2480374a0b7df56b7f3d9b

(418)

on February 15, 2011
at 05:40 PM

HORSERADISH!!!!!

D30ff86ad2c1f3b43b99aed213bcf461

on February 15, 2011
at 05:50 PM

Ohhhhh good call. All my supermarket's bottled horseradish has soybean oil integrated (sigh). I do love using wasabi powder on roasted veggies. Any good brands of standard white horseradish to recommend?

D30ff86ad2c1f3b43b99aed213bcf461

on February 15, 2011
at 05:51 PM

Ohhhhh good call. I'm pretty sure that all of the bottled horseradishes available at my supermarket have soybean oil integrated (sigh). I do love using wasabi powder on roasted veggies. Any good brands of standard white horseradish to recommend?

5d0283f9cf2480374a0b7df56b7f3d9b

(418)

on February 15, 2011
at 06:05 PM

atomic horseradish is my favorite (unless I make my own which I've done a couple of times when I found horseradish at my local farmer's market). http://www.amazon.com/Atomic-Horseradish-Super-Hot-Jar/dp/B002HG9R1I - it does have a tiny bit of sugar, but other than that I think the ingredients are pretty clean

2
5672b2d190891342389e764cc4056ca9

(1304)

on February 16, 2011
at 02:59 AM

Anchovies, preserved either under oil or salt (but rinse the latter very well...): add one or two to any dish, they melt when heated, incredibly easy way to add taste.

D30ff86ad2c1f3b43b99aed213bcf461

on February 16, 2011
at 03:25 AM

I've never bought anchovies but you are sure tempting me! :) Any particular brands that you'd recommend trying?

5672b2d190891342389e764cc4056ca9

(1304)

on February 16, 2011
at 04:51 AM

Anchovies are the easy route to add taste, and they go well with everything. But if you have patience you can experiment with many other umami-taste ingredients: SHIITAKE MUSHROOMS (add them to soups, sauces, braised meats); SUNDRIED TOMATOES (for souces, braised meats); PARMESAN crust (just add to slow cooking meat some parmesan cheese crust, which you would normally throw away: scrape it with a knife first. I know it's not "paleo", you don't need to eat it, if you don't want, but it gives lots of taste); DRY SCALLOPS/CONPOY (in Asian markets, expensive, good in soups and souces).

5672b2d190891342389e764cc4056ca9

(1304)

on February 16, 2011
at 11:26 AM

Anchovies are easy to use and go well with everything. But if you have patience you can experiment with many other umami-taste ingredients: DRY MUSHROOMS, i.e. shiitake and porcini (add them to soups, sauces, braised meats); SUNDRIED TOMATOES (for souces, braised meats); PARMESAN crust (just add to slow cooking meat some parmesan cheese crust, which you would normally throw away: scrape it with a knife first. I know it's not "paleo", you can always toss it after cooking, the taste will still be in the sauce); DRY SCALLOPS/CONPOY (in Asian markets, expensive, good in soups and souces).

5672b2d190891342389e764cc4056ca9

(1304)

on February 16, 2011
at 03:41 AM

Any brand would do; right now I have the brand "L'isola d'oro" in my pantry. I've never seen them preserved under seed oil, but you may want to keep an eye on that. Even in this case, you don't really use the oil, only the anchovy. They are mostly produced in Italy, Spain, and other Mediterranean countries, and come either in glass jars or tins. They are very savory, you cannot eat them as you would eat canned tuna or sardines, think of "condiment" rather than "fish".

A4216f1b1e1f5ab3815bd91700905081

(1646)

on May 16, 2012
at 02:50 AM

Don't forget Bonito flakes and kelp granules!

2
C491ff8ce20d5c17f8f7ff94392a9570

(1617)

on February 16, 2011
at 01:07 AM

Tamari, besides adding a salty flavor, adds umami. If you want the same complex "yum" that you get from tamari you should find something else with that umami thang going on...most fermented foods are a good bet. Worcestershire. Fun vinegars. Dried mushrooms have it too I think. And the coconut aminos that have already been mentioned. I think they smell kind of weird personally, but when I use them in something (not just all by itself) the weirdness gets completely muted.

D30ff86ad2c1f3b43b99aed213bcf461

on February 16, 2011
at 03:24 AM

Yes, I am such a fan of umami, if I thought that I could get away with it I'd name a child of mine Umami! Mushrooms, cheeses, asparagus, wasabi, rich broths (like in pho)....mmmmmmm. You're right that I need to track down other fermentation-based condiments. Wonder if the anchovies that Paola suggested also offer up the desired umami??

A4216f1b1e1f5ab3815bd91700905081

(1646)

on May 16, 2012
at 02:51 AM

Yep, anchovies are an umami source. So is dried kelp.

2
74d0407ca99061cab2512ed83683b498

on February 15, 2011
at 06:26 PM

I like making a sort of pared down pesto with either basil, mint or parsley, olive oil, garlic, salt, and a little lemon juice. It's ridiculously good on meats of all kinds, especially steaks and lamb chops

1
Ff0eb1d253529db1be092a8db5e95578

on May 16, 2012
at 01:44 AM

a top score for umami is Thai fish sauce. Seems paleo, but quality apparently varies greatly. You can learn more about this secret weapon of Thai cooking with this article. http://www.thaifoodandtravel.com/ingredients/fishsauce.html I can vouch for the Golden Boy brand being very tasty.

32f5749fa6cf7adbeb0b0b031ba82b46

(41747)

on May 16, 2012
at 04:40 AM

I season nearly all my beef with fish sauce, it's good stuff, adds a nice complex flavor.

1
74f5d2ff6567edd456d31dfb9b92af61

(5227)

on February 15, 2011
at 10:58 PM

I'm currently addicted to tahini and sriracha. I don't imagine that tahini is terribly Paleo (derived from sesame seeds), but it does taste brilliant on everything from eggs to vegetables. :)

D30ff86ad2c1f3b43b99aed213bcf461

on February 16, 2011
at 03:26 AM

I definitely enjoy Worchestershire sauce; will be on the lookout for an HFCS-free one.

D30ff86ad2c1f3b43b99aed213bcf461

on February 15, 2011
at 11:21 PM

Wish that I could use sriracha in more marinades and sauces. I have a pretty iron stomach, but unfortunately my husband is terribly sensitive to it.

74f5d2ff6567edd456d31dfb9b92af61

(5227)

on February 15, 2011
at 11:29 PM

Aww, I'm sorry to hear that. A sriracha-less life is a sad one indeed. My fella can't do spicy, either -- do you like Worcestershire? It's a bit sweet, and you'd have to dig around to find a brand without HFCS, but a tiny bit goes a long way and it does lend a nice palate to meatloaves, ground mince, and burgers. :)

1
Cab7e4ef73c5d7d7a77e1c3d7f5773a1

(7304)

on February 15, 2011
at 06:39 PM

I like salsa. I found a good brand without soybean oil and such, and it is delicious. I am also fond of throwing things in a pan with coconut milk, ginger, turmeric, pepper, etc. Usually turns out well.

1
Fac1af832cc3c6a20059c41411fd0f6b

(1548)

on February 15, 2011
at 06:07 PM

Deli Mustard and Salsa have been my sauces of choice lately.

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