Where Personal and Professional Life Collide...

My life in 8 words: Organized chaos, by preference. Exhausting, but never boring

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Every now and again the world reminds us we aren't the end all and be all of experience...
The subject header is fron a story, but the experience is from life:

I was talking to a friend while I was reheating last night's leftovers for lunch, and I said, idly, in passing, "I think this needs fish sauce. Hang on a sec."

And my friend, flabbergasted, said "you have fish sauce in your cabinet?"

Me: "The fridge, actually. You don't?"

Note to self: to some otherwise lovely people, fish sauce is weird/exotic/icky. They're still nice people you can associate with, really.

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Its true. I found, Laura Anne, Worcestershire Sauce to be the "Gateway drug" to Fish Sauce, since they are so alike.

Umami for the win!

Edited at 2013-02-14 06:23 pm (UTC)

oh, you need to upgrade your fish sauce.... *g*

(they do have similarities, but very different cooking results!)

Recommendations on brands?

I like Thai Kitchen, but Chaz might be able to suggest some other US-available options...

Do you have access to an Asian or a world foods grocery store somewhere? My preferred one is Squid brand, a Thai-made import.

I do. Minneapolis is pretty solid on ethnic groceries. Squid brand, hmmm? Thanks.

How very odd of them! Fish sauce is a staple.

I have a deep aversion to fish, from a bad fish experience as a kid. The taste just makes me sick. That said, even though this may sound stupid, does fish sauce taste fishy? Because I've hesitated to use it in various dishes, even though I've probably had it in various asian foods. I think. But am not sure.

If you've had southeast Asian food, you've had it, yeah.

Fishy? I'm never sure quite what that means, since to me different fishes taste differently, but fish sauce impart a sort of salty-smooth texture more than a particular taste. Think of it as natural, much-better-for-you MSG....?

Why do you keep it in the fridge? Mine sits alongside the soys and the Worcestershire and so forth; it hadn't crossed my mind that it might need refrigeration. (Nor have I noticed a change in flavour over time...)

It can get Very Hot here in the summer. I make a habit of, once liquids have been opened, refrigerating them (except honey and oils. Honey and oils stay in the pantry).

Ah, that heat thing. I'm still adjusting to how Very Hot affects things that didn't use to be affected by English summers. (My first evening here, all that way back when, I murmured to Kari, "Karen keeps her red wine in the fridge!" The next summer, when I was over, I left a bottle out on the counter for a week or two. Um. Not doing that again. It had practically boiled in the bottle. Now we have a wine fridge and we use it. Indeed, we have two wine fridges, tho' the other one is destined for sausages...)

How Roman of you.

(Fish sauce is apparently, cf. Alton Brown, descended from garum, which the Romans--as well as the Greeks and Byzantines--put on pretty much everything.)

The Greeks have first claim on any recorded reference, actually.

Although I suspect the Asian cultures may have discovered it quite independently.

Edited at 2013-02-14 07:14 pm (UTC)

Fish sauce is easy. *Oyster* sauce, on the other hand... I think I need more recipes that call for it.

Asian oyster sauce, or English oyster sauce?

Asian in my case, since this was for a Thai Beef Salad recipe. But I must confess to my utter ignorance of not just the difference, but the very existence of English fish oyster sauce!

Google time!

Edited at 2013-02-14 07:31 pm (UTC)

Wait, are we talking the stuff for shrimp cocktails, or just your basic tartar sauce? o.O Incidentally, I have both in my fridge.

I had never heard of it until I found myself sick after eating some Thai which sounded very unfishy. It just hadn't been a part of the palate I was raised on.

It's probably quite yummy, but even the tiny bits of fish that used to be okay are becoming dietary no-nos.

I miss good fish, and not having to read labels every time I ate noodle bowls would be nice. Trader Joes does make a nice vegan Thai noodle bowl, but I know it's not the same.

I'm pretty sure that our local Kroger's doesn't have fish sauce. It does have Kraut Juice, however.

::Insert German sauerkraut joke here::

This happens to me sometimes in other realms, too. The one that boggles me the most is when a first-time visitor to my home says, wonderingly, "You have a lot of books!"

I don't, actually, have what most on these boards would consider a lot of books. I do have books in every room. I would guesstimate I might have 700-900 books altogether. I have actually been in homes that had not even one book. Not even a Bible. My brain cannot stretch around that concept. It just - won't. But obviously not everyone loves books. My POV is not the only one, clearly. Still...

A variant on 'you have a lot of books' is " Have you READ all of these books" ...

Off Topic - The coastal Mass weather is horrible. The Boskone attendees will probably be leaving into the teeth of the storm. I suspect that you were wise not to go. I gave it a pass as I had to keep the house from freezing if the power goes off.

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