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Old 09-01-2009, 05:48 AM   #1
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Nuc Mam, Oyster sauce

Oh, brother. We had friends from "old Hawaii days" come to visit, and they cooked supper (a Filipino soup and some poke). Now I have a rather large bottle of both of these. Luckily I can get good quality ahi here so can make some poke. Any ideas for using these condiments?

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Old 09-01-2009, 06:32 AM   #2
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Claire, oyster sauce is a common ingredient in Chinese (and other Asian) dishes. Fish sauce is the Southeast Asian equivalent of soy sauce and is also a common ingredient.

They both last a very long time in the fridge.
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Old 09-01-2009, 07:17 AM   #3
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Fish sauce is like the Asian equivalent of Worcestershire sauce. Treat with care though as a little can go far. Heavily used in Thai cuisine. And it truly does last a lifetime.

Oyster sauce is yummy! I add it to cup-a-soups all the time to give them a kick.

Leafy green vegetables stirfried quickly in a bit of oyster sauce, soy sauce, garlic and ginger is delightful. LIkewise with broccoli.

Also try making chicken rissoles and use some of the oyster sauce as a marinade to make them all sticky before oven roasting.

Oyster sauce used to loiter at my place once I stopped doing stirfries but now I reach for it fairly regularly. Try adding a blob of it to a casserole for a richer flavour. Likewise for soy sauce. Don't limit it's use to Asian cuisine, it is quite versatile.
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Old 09-01-2009, 08:28 AM   #4
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Both Nuoc Mam & Oyster Sauce are definite staples in my house. I'm never without either one. I keep them in the fridge & they last indefinitely. Asian cooking wouldn't be the same without them. Here's one of my favorite recipes using oyster sauce:


Breezy Chicken Asparagus with Oyster/Black Bean Sauce

2 boneless skinless chicken breast pieces or tenders (about a pound or so), sliced & cut into bitesized pieces
1 bunch fresh asparagus (about a pound or so), tough ends trimmed & cut into 2" pieces
2 stalks of Bok Choy, ends trimmed, cut into 1" pieces
2" piece of fresh Ginger, peeled & minced
3 large or 6 small cloves of garlic, peeled & chopped
3 tablespoons Chinese salted/preserved/fermented black beans
2 tablespoons oyster sauce
3 tablespoons dry sherry
1 teaspoon oriental chile paste/sauce
8 fresh shitake mushrooms, stemmed & quartered
1 tablespoon cornstarch dissolved in 1 tablespoon dry sherry & one tablespoon water (optional)
3 tablespoons or so Peanut or vegetable oil for stirfrying
Cooked Jasmine Rice for serving.

Soak preserved black beans in hot tap water to cover & let sit for 15 minutes. Drain beans, add garlic, & mash together with a fork to make a rough paste. Add sherry, oyster sauce, & chile paste & stir.
Bring a pot of water large enough to hold asparagus pieces to a boil & add all asparagus pieces except for the tips. Boil for 2 minutes, then add tips & boil for another minute. Drain.
Make rice according to package directions.
Heat wok (or large frying/saute pan) until drop of water sizzles. Add oil & swirl.
Add Bok Choy & ginger & stirfry for 1 minute. Add chicken pieces & continue stirfrying until chicken is just about cooked thru. Add mushrooms & stirfry for another minute. Add blanched asparagus & bean paste mixture & stir for another minute. If sauce isn’t think enough, add dissolved cornstarch mixture & continue stirring until thickened.
Serve over Jasmine Rice.
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Old 09-01-2009, 11:11 AM   #5
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Try adding a drop or two of fish sauce to your soups, sauces and salad dressings.
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Old 09-02-2009, 02:32 PM   #6
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If you're daring you can add the fish sauce to spaghetti sauce. My italian grandma used to put anchovies in hers and that was the secret to making it richer. Fish sauce imparts something similar, not sure if they use anchovies in it but its pretty good.

A very simple dish is cold noodles (Can be buckwheat, or just spaghetti or any kind) a little fish sauce; and a little chile sauce are the main ingredients but you can also add garlic, onions, etc.

Oyster sauce is usually good with stir fried beef. It has a more richer taste but you can use it in lots of stuff, just like fish sauce it is basically salty so think of it like that. I like it better on pork or beef, rather than chicken...
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Old 09-21-2009, 05:23 PM   #7
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Oyster Sauce

My 99cent only store had TONS of the stuff. But, I didn't know how to use it, so I passed it by.

I'm gonna grab a bottle soon.
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Old 09-21-2009, 11:01 PM   #8
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Fish sauce IS umami.

I am convinced that my genetic lineup of taste buds is attuned to the stuff,
because it is one of my most favorite flavors. Well worth experimenting with
in many dishes to give it a depth of "savory".
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