Tuesday, June 2, 2009

秘制辣椒豉油 - Spicy Soy Sauce

This post deserves the exact conversation my brother and I had on FB. So here it goes:

CC: Can you teach me how to make my own spicy soy sauce please??
JC: Chop up/mince plenty of scallion, chillies and garlic, add sugar, dark soy, light soy, chicken powder, white pepper, a very little amount of water. Put in large bowl or glass container, then put inside dry sink. In a skillet heat up plenty of oil (at least 1/2 the amount of liquid you added to the chopped mixture). Heat oil till it's smoking, carefully but quickly pour oil into chopped mixture, this will caramelize the sugar, bring out the flavour of the soy sauce like you've never tasted it before and release the aromas of the scallion, garlic and chillies. Leave in sink till it's cooled down a bit, then with a large spoon, remove excess oil. Voila!!!
CC: NICE!!!! Must make some soon!!! :) Must find large glass container first. :)
JC: careful of the oil splattering (hence, container in sink)
CC: What's the proportion of sugar to dark soy to light soy? Everything else I am ok with. :)
JC: Actually you can mix the dark light soy and sugar and water and chicken powder and white pepper in a separate bowl and get the taste you like before adding to the chopped mixture. Some like it sweeter so you really have to try for yourself. I do 1 sugar one water one dark and 2 light soy.

Raw ingredients all chopped up and ready to go.


In goes the raw ingredients into the jar with the dark/light soy sauce, sugar, chicken powder, and pepper. Had to finish off a jar of tomato sauce for this.


I was screaming 'wahhhhhhhhhh' when I poured the oil into the container!! It made a lovely sizzling noise and the aroma was brilliant! Wahhhhhhhhh!!! (I think I heard Jamie Oliver say brilliant aroma once. Where else would I have gotten it from?! He did not scream though like Chinese school girl.)


Final product. It will taste even better after it sits in the fridge for a few weeks as all the flavours collide.


My sister also let me borrow her 方太 Fong Tai (Lisa Yam) books - Three Dishes for Fifty Dollars and Set Menu of Four. These recipe books have very typical HK cuisines and the recipes are written in Traditional Chinese, English, and Japanese. Her cooking shows were very popular in the 80s and 90s. I never watched it back then though. As for the books, they don't even sell them anymore but Yes Asia has other titles similar.

I love my siblings. :)

Oh and here is my bro's comments after he saw mine. Next time I know!
JC: Oh let me add some tips first, saw Cat's version, good but can be better :) Looks impressive for a first time though Cat :)
JC: Ok, here's how it goes: Don't make sauce in too large a batch, you will find the oil won't be able to heat through to the ingredients/sauces at the bottom. If you must, use a deep dish instead of a jar, that way the heat distributes a lot better, and you can scoop out the oil after you transferred the sauce into the jar, but, disadvantage, loads of splattering.
Also I find, the flavours fuse better if you chop the ingredients smaller, so don't be afraid to use a blender, it actually produces better results :) I chop my chili and scallion to the size of the chopped garlic
CC: What do you think if I take the sauce back out and re-splatter the oil on top? You think that would help?
JC: Have you tasted it? it looks good enough actually.
CC: I think it taste pretty good. But will note that for next time. Now what should I cook to dip in it?
JC: Hotpot lor :) Fishballs etc, anything that calls for soy sauce.
If you making lamb hotpot, just add a dash of Aged chinese vinegar into the sauce, tastes mega good. Of course you can also add sesame sauce and sesame oil to the mixture when dipping
JC: Oh, excellent for boiled prawns 白勺蝦 and since you made such a huge batch you should give some to dad mom grandma and pauline :p

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