Friday, 6 December 2013


There are always zesty flavored fabulous recipes for stir fry sauces that can turn plain sautéed vegetables and meat into an amazing Asian treat. While stir-fry sauces can vary widely in flavor profiles, anything from mildly sweet to powerfully spicy, the best sauce is one that successfully hints at sweetness, saltiness, spiciness and a little sourness.  This article will try to share a few basic recipes and where you can customized it according to your desired taste or used it to flavor stir fry and other Asian dishes.

The ultimate stir fry sauce for us is something you have on your pantry and use it to flavor a quick meal with filled with your desired profiles.  There are actually a variety of flavoring sauces that you can find in Asian stores everywhere. These would include; the umami flavors of Nuoc Mam, a Vietnamese fish sauce and Chinese oyster sauce.  You can also find the sweeter black sauces of Indonesian Kecap Manis and Chinese hoisin sauce.  For heat you will find Huy Fong's Sriracha chili sauce. Adjust according to your taste, but the perfect ratio for me is two teaspoon each of the fish, oyster sauce, kecap manis and hoisin sauces and one teaspoon of the chili sauce for some heat. I sometimes add one to two teaspoons of rice wine or vinegar.

Mix and add to any stir fry or use as a quick marinade for any type of protein. Double or triple the recipe for larger batches.  This may sound simple, but it works out perfectly.  These are the sauces we always have on hand and they're easy enough to prepare on the spot.  We have been stir frying for years and now we don't measure out the exact portions anymore but as if by instinct, pour those amounts into a bowl, mix, and the stir fry.  Using these special sauces have grown in our method and become our instincts to add a few of a particular sauce to perfectly reach our desired taste.   As a simple warning though, please taste-test your dish before adding more of the ingredients to the dish.

We believe what is best for a recipe for a stir fry sauce is a simple combination of Chinese, Indonesian, Japanese (if I use Mirin), Thai, and Vietnamese flavors in one sauce. Remember that fish and oyster sauces are salty enough and in using broth, choose the low sodium types.  You don’t have to add salt to your dish anymore.  In adding sweetness to your dish, it is the kecap manis and hoisin sauces that are sweet enough which means you also do not have to add extra sugar anymore.  We have been using kecap manis since its thickness means more concentrated soy sauce flavor and its darkness yields a lovely color to marinades.  Lastly, you can finish it off with a little heat with spice, not so much though, you can use the Sriracha sauce.  Carefully add one fourth teaspoon and adjust according to your desire.  Happy stir frying and please continue stir frying at home.

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