17 November 2009
This s one of my favourite sauces for quick cooking. It is easy to make a delicious sauce in no time at all using oyster sauce, which gives a rich aroma to a dish. Thick and brown, it is made from a concentrate of oysters cooked in soy sauce, seasonings аnd brine. Despite its name, oyster sauce does not taste fishy. It has a rich flavour and is used not only in cooking but also as a condiment, diluted with a little oil, for vegetables, poultry or meat; it is very versatile. It is usually sold in bottles and can be bought in Chinese grocers' shops and some supermarkets. Look for the most expensive brands as they are the highest in quality. Keep refrigerated after opening.
Long-grain rice This is the most popular rice for cooking in southern China. The Chinese go through the ritual of washing it, but in the case of rice purchased at a supermarket, this step can be omitted for quick cookery. One of my favourite rices is the long-grain variety from Thailand which has a pleasing fragrance, like that of the Indian basmati rice. Thai aromatic long-grain rice is now available from many Chinese and Southeast Asian grocers'.
Short-grain rice Short-grain rice is not as frequently used in Chinese cooking as the long-grain type except for making morning rice porridge. It is more popular in Japan. Suitable brands which can be found in many Chinese or Japanese food shops are known as 'American Rose' or 'Japanese Rose'. Short-grain rice is slightly stickier than long-grain white rice.