With all the attention pork belly, cupcakes, and tacos get these days, one would think there'd be a spotlight given to sauce — an essential part of cooking anywhere around the world. Today marks the beginning of National Sauce Month, and during this time, we fully intend to give sauces of all kinds, from soubise to Sriracha, their full due. French and Italian sauces get a lot of press time, but there's just as much to cover when it comes to East Asian sauces. What do you know about them? I'm going to lay on the questions thick, describing the sauce and its application, and I want you to guess what it is. Let's get pouring!
What Are Your Asian Sauce Smarts?
Japanese sauce made with mirin, soy sauce, and sugar; used on fish in Eastern and meat in Western cuisines.
Popular Chinese sauce containing sugar, salt, water, cornstarch, and oyster extract; used in chow mein, beef stir-fry, and other family-style dishes.
Filipino sauce made with soy sauce, vinegar, bay leaves, garlic, and peppercorns; often served with chicken or pork over rice.
Condiment made from plums, sugar, vinegar, ginger, and chiles; used in noodles and as a dip for rolls.
Dark sauce made of sugar, soybeans, water, vinegar, rice, salt, garlic, and chiles; served alongside spring rolls and in mu shu pork.
Fermented anchovies packed in salt and water; used in Thai soups and noodle stir-fries.
Sauce made with vinegar, soy sauce, and a sweet element such as ketchup; often used as a dipping sauce or as a coating for deep-fried meat.
Spicy seafood sauce made of dried scallops, shrimp or fish, chili, ham, garlic, and oil; stir-fried with wide, flat noodles.
Condiment of roasted-peanut-based paste, soy sauce, ginger, garlic, and spices; often served with satay for dipping.
Chinese American sauce, made from fruits such as apples, apricots, plums, or peaches, as well as sugar, vinegar, ginger, and chiles. Served alongside fried duck or chicken.