Things Are Getting A Little Saucy
Think of a beautiful rump steak, sat alone on a plate, perhaps there are a few salad leaves lying scattered around – but what is that steak without a delicious creamy, peppery accompaniment? What about that plate of fat, salty, scrummy chips – they need a little something extra don’t they? A healthy dollop of ketchup perhaps?
Sauce is the perfect accompaniment to most (note we don’t say all) dishes. Always the bridesmaid, never the bride, we think it’s time we celebrated the varied, omnipresent and humble hero that is sauce.
Dangerously Hot Sauces
The South and Central American countries are renowned for their spicy sauces and the resident sauce-lovers have very high spice tolerance levels. You only have to catch a whiff to know Marie Sharps Belizean Heat is not for the faint hearted.
If you thought you loved hot sauce, think again. Arizona-based chilli fanatic Vic Clinco has the world’s biggest hot sauce collection – 6,000 bottles and counting! The collection contains a bottle of Blair’s Caldera 16 Mil (caldera translates to ‘volcanic cauldron’) which is certified as the hottest sauce on the planet. Measuring 16 million Scoville units the bottle costs almost £3,000.
And it may surprise you to hear Peri-Peri wasn’t invented by Nando’s, it’s actually a traditional Peruvian salsa – the medium version is probably safe for the unaccustomed tongue!
Strange Sauce Combos
You may find it perfectly acceptable to dunk your pizza in ketchup and your pork with pineapple sauce, but spare a thought for the tastes of others around you.
In the Netherlands it’s the norm to eat your chips with mayo (if you’re feeling particularly risque, mix a little japanese wasabi in there – a real ‘fusion’ and it’ll taste delicious!)
Any Brit worth their salt wouldn’t be alarmed in the slightest to find their chip-shop chips-slathered in a thick layer of gloopy curry sauce, but any visitors to our fine land may find the image slightly disconcerting. Here at hungryhouse we have a few chip-zealots in the room – the kind who will only allow vinegar to come near their chips. That’s right, not even a dab of ketchup can go near that sacred newspaper parcel. However, the northerners amongst us swear that adding gravy to chips is not an option, but a given (watch the Southerners in the room recoil in disgust…)
We’re not the only ones to have found a new use for curry sauce. Germany’s ‘curry wurst’ is a combination of fried pork sausage and curried tomato ketchup – the continental equivalent to our post-pub grub.
Sriracha may look more at home on your Chinese but there are tales of it tasting delicious with a wide array of other unlikely suspects – think ice cream, peanut butter, popcorn and even hot chocolate!
But there are rules…*
- Bloody Mary is only Bloody Mary when made with Worcester Sauce
- Hot Wings must be eaten with blue cheese sauce (unless you’ve moved on to ranch dressing)
- Beef and horseradish, pork and apple sauce. NOT the other way around
- You can’t make guacamole without lime. It’s just not Mexican
Even pasta has them. All real Italian’s know certain pastas taste best with certain sauces.
The general rule is the thicker the pasta, the chunkier the sauce can be. We all know macaroni goes best with cheese sauce, but don’t go putting your penne with seafood, or your pappardelle with tomato – they go with vegetable and meat sauces respectively!
Curry sauces also have several general rules. Mild Indian dishes tend to have creamier sauces and more ingredients like coconut – the perfect example is Pasanda, a curry sauce made with cream, coconut milk and almonds.
Spicier curry sauces tend to be tomato based, for example a Madras can certainly tingle the taste buds.
How do you like yours? Share your sauce secrets with us – we promise we won’t tell (sort of)
Main image via
* Rules are made to be broken and we sometimes make our Bloody Mary’s with Tabasco…. Shuuuuush