Sweet and Sour Sauce

This is the first post in our Saucier Series. Saucier (pronounced saws-yey) is a position usually found in large commercial kitchens. The Saucier, also known as the Sauce Cook, is responsible for creating and producing sauces as an accompaniment to meats, vegetables, and fish. They can also be responsible for preparing soups, stews, salad dressings, sweet sauces for desserts, pasta, hot hors d’œuvres, sautés, and other made to order dishes.

Today’s sauce is one of my favorites. Take me to a Chinese Restaurant and one of the dishes I will most likely order is Sweet and Sour – something. Although I love Chinese food I can be very particular about how it is prepared. I have found that for me the best way to deal with this particularness is to prepare the food myself.

Sweet and Sour Sauce

If you do a search of recipes online for Sweet and Sour Sauce, most call for adding ketchup, which to me does not make for a good authentic Chinese Restaurant style Sweet and Sour Sauce. Not satisfied with the results of any recipes I could find prepared by someone else, I went to the Lukewarm Legumes Test Kitchen and put together a Sweet and Sour Sauce that I think rivals any you will find at your local Chinese Restaurant. Not only is it delicious and easy to make, but you can put it together from ingredients that most likely are already in your pantry.

Mise En Place - Sweet and Sour Sauce

Sweet and Sour Sauce

1/2 c Rice Vinegar
1 c Pineapple or Orange Juice
1 t Ginger, ground
1/2 t Garlic powder
2/3 c Brown Sugar, packed
2 T Honey

1/4 c Water
2 T Corn Starch

Red Food Dye

Mix all but cornstarch and the 1/4c water in a sauce pan, heat and stir until well blended. Add cornstarch to remaining cold water and stir to dissolve. Combine dissolved cornstarch with sauce in the pan. Heat until sauce thickens to the desired consistency. Add water to thin if necessary. After thickened, add red food dye to produce the desired shade.

Serve with rice and your favorite: chicken, fish, pork, beef, or even veggies. I think this sauce makes almost everything better. 🙂

This is a sauce you can prepare ahead of time. Store it in your refrigerator and it can be quickly heated as needed.


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