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Wednesday, June 7, 2023

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CultureFood & DrinkGood Taste: San Francisco's Unicorn Meat assumes a tasty...

Good Taste: San Francisco’s Unicorn Meat assumes a tasty new form

Unicorn Tots is the newest vegan product by Umami Industries.

Welcome back to Good Taste, your weekly food column that’s been on a working vacation! This week, we are checking back in with a rare local vegan company.

Unicorn Meat’s current packaging
The Unicorn Meat box
Vegan Unicorn Horn Dumplings by Tamara Palmer (2021)

48 Hills was the first to introduce readers to a local probiotic plant patty called Unicorn Meat back in February 2021, when we shared an original recipe for Vegan Unicorn Horn Dumplings made with an easy potsticker dough. The San Francisco company, then called Unicorn Meat Co., is now called Umami Industries, and has been spotted with fresh packaging and a rare new product line.

While Unicorn Meat is made with chickpeas, wheat, onion, shiitake mushrooms, dulse (seaweed), and microbes, the newer Unicorn Tots are a frozen snack product made with lentil and quinoa. I received a couple bags of Unicorn Tots in BBQ Chili Crisp and Cinnamon Sugar flavors as an apology for my recent Unicorn Meat order being delayed, which offers me the opportunity to share a taste test. (I ordered Unicorn Meat to see how the product has evolved over the past two years, and to use it in two bespoke recipe collections I’m creating for friends because it holds flavors really well.)

BBQ Chili Crisp Unicorn Tots
Cooked Unicorn Tots

The mashed lentils in Unicorn Tots act as a potato-like element in the scenario, and it works! The baked quinoa gets both crispy and crunchy and helps everything keep its form. A serving doesn’t leave me pining after a bag of Ore-Idea like it could have.

Though the Cinnamon Sugar variety smells amazing and offers a suggestion of a hot donut, the BBQ Chili Crisp version emerged as the preferred of the two, and that’s mainly because it seems unlikely that I’ll crave a dessert potato tater tot unless it was made with a sweet potato and condensed milk was somehow involved.

Unicorn Tots are currently available online in multipacks, in single bags at Mainstay Markets and on menus at Bar Piccino and the Third Street location of Plant Cafe Organic, all in San Francisco. Four-packs of frozen Unicorn Meat are available for Bay Area delivery and domestic shipping. 

Discover more unusual food finds at Tamara’s site California Eating.

48 Hills welcomes comments in the form of letters to the editor, which you can submit here. We also invite you to join the conversation on our FacebookTwitter, and Instagram

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