Vietnamese Dipping Sauce
This recipe calls for fish sauce, a salty, pungent liquid that is an essential seasoning in Southeast Asian cuisines. The best-quality fish sauce is pressed from small fish, commonly anchovies, that have been salted, packed in barrels, and fermented for several months under the steady heat of the tropical sun.
Serve this dipping sauce with our Vietnamese Beef Salad (see related recipe at left).
- 6 Tbs. fresh lime juice
- 3 Tbs. fish sauce
- 1/4 cup sugar
- 1 garlic clove, crushed with the side of a knife
- 1/4 tsp. red chili paste, plus more, to taste
- 1 to 2 Tbs. warm water (optional)
In a bowl, whisk together the lime juice, fish sauce, sugar, garlic and chili paste. Taste the sauce; if it is too strongly flavored, whisk in warm water as needed. Makes about 3/4 cup.