Ponzu sauce might be described as an evolved soy sauce, for it is basically soy with a definite citrus touch – soy sauce made to fit the Asian criteria of sweet, tart, bitter, and salty. A hint if fish, a touch of heat and a tad of rice wine come into the picture, making the mixture very exciting. Ideally, ponzu sauce’s tartness comes from yuzu, an Asian citrus, but it is not widely available. Alas, we will make do with combinations of lemon and line.
You can make your own ponzu quite simply or buy the lightly-colored, not very thick substance at your local supermarket. Whenever any savory recipe lacks something, chances are ponzu with its salty/soy combination can fix your dilemma.
How to make ponzu saucce:
Consider making your own ponzu sauce, fresh and free of preservatives. It is simple and challenging to arrive at the four-way tastiness so sought-after in Asian cuisine.
Combine and simmer for 10 minutes:
4 parts low-sodium soy sauce
1 part rice vinegar
1 part rice wine
Small piece of seaweed chopped
2 parts fish flakes
After the above has been cooled, add:
Pinch of pepper flakes
3 parts lemon juice
1 part lime juice
Refrigerate for a couple of hours, strain and serve. REMEMBER, YOU WANT IT: Sweet, tart, bitter, and salty all at the same time!
Covered and refrigerated, fresh ponzu will keep for several days.
Serving and cooking suggestions:
Hot and Sour Soups
Dumpling Dipping Sauce
Vegetable and Meat Dipping Sauce
Dressing for Greens
Sushi and Sashumi