There might be two things that cross your mind when you hear the words “fish sauce.” Your mind might immediately conjure up the delicious dipping sauces that are served with traditional fish and seafood dishes, such as garlic butter, hollandaise sauce, citrus-based sauces, white wine sauce or white butter sauce.
A seafood charcuterie platter offers a unique flavor profile, and you can incorporate fish and other seafood into your side dishes or center your entire platter around your favorite sea creature! Dried, cured and smoked fish all have amazing texture and flavor, and the best part for many seafood lovers is the variety of dipping sauces to choose from when serving this salty cuisine.
However, fermented fish sauce is something completely different. A salty, brown liquid that is made from fish is an important ingredient used in cooking around the world, especially in places like Thailand and Vietnam.
Unlike common seasonings in western cooking like salt, fish sauce is a distinct flavor and aroma of its own. Fish sauce is made from the juice inside of fish flesh that is extracted, salted and fermented. Made from small fish that would not have been adequate for consumption, popular varieties include anchovies, mackerel and sardines.
The fish can be fresh or saltwater, but one requirement is that they be very fresh to develop a pleasant smell and taste. As soon as they are caught, the fish are rinsed, drained and mixed with sea salt. The mixture is placed in large jars lined with salt where they undergo fermentation, which can take up to year
Fish sauce is often served with pork-based charcuterie for a unique flavor you’ll never forget.