There are very few things The Man won’t put Sriracha sauce on. I am not kidding here. I’ve known ketchup addicts, and now I’m beginning to find a sub-cult of Sriracha addicts. There are times I think I may have to carry a bottle of Sriracha in my purse in case we find a restaurant that doesn’t have it when it’s critical to the meal.
Most people think of Sriracha as a way to disguise mediocre Asian food, but talk to a few addicts and they’ll get a little teary-eyed about their passion for this spicy sauce. It’s easily recognizable as the big bottle with the green top and the cock on the front. Although the recipe was perfected by a smaller company in Thailand, Huy Fong Foods in California created an American variation and helped popularize it from coast to coast. You can find it in most mainstream Asian food places, and increasingly in other restaurants (you might have to ask for it).
The chili paste and garlic is combined with vinegar, salt, and pepper, similar to ketchup. But this sauce has a kick that appeals to spice-lovers. If you don’t like spicy food, use this sparingly until you can gauge your tolerance level vs. the flavor enhancement.
Not only is this a great sauce to put on burgers, Chinese take-out, sandwiches, and fries, it’s fun to add a little to a stir-fry, soup, and pasta while you’re cooking because the flavor profile and spice adds some attitude. We’re not against some attitude in food around here.
Even if you think you know Sriracha, if you’ve only ever had it in a Chinese restaurant over your Chow Mein or Pad Thai, you don’t know Sriracha. I promise. Try it on a veggie burger or kabobs at your next barbecue, put a few dabs on your pizza, or include some in your next 10-bean soup for a tasty twist on the legume overload.