Pronounced “SIR-rotch-ah,” some say, “It burns your body, not your tongue.” And, it is popular in many cultures, namely Thai, Vietnamese, Chinese French, English and Spanish.
How do you like heat in your food? Do you like it “cooked in,” a cook’s secret, or is it important to you to doctor most all your food after the cook serves it to you? Before sriracha, most hot sauces were runny, a thin liquid which trickeled down or disappeared into the dish. Now, sriracha is thick, as well as hot. You can “shoot” it and aim it. This means you can keep an eye on your heat as you eat, pick and poke it around in just the exact amounts you require. Sweet!
According to the LA Times, there are only 5 ingredients necessary in a Sriracha sauce: ripened chiles, garlic, vinegar, sugar and salt. A wide latitude exists by tweaking the amounts, type peppers used, and adding other spices which helps many different brands compete. The original blend is said to have been Sriraja Panich distributed by Eastland. In the U.S. Huy Fong Foods’ “Rooster Sauce,” made in California, is one of the most popular. It is said sriracha sauce originated in a Thai town, Si Racha, many years ago, and it was served as a sauce for crabmeat.
There are many, many brands of sriracha-type sauces manufactured around the world. We are indebted to the folks over at Serious Eats for running this “Siracha Popularity Test.”
Brand 1: Shark Brand Sriracha Chili Sauce (Thailand)
Brand 2: Kikkoman Sriracha Hot Chili Sauce (USA)
Brand 3: Huy Fong Sriracha Hot Chili Sauce (USA) (ROOSTER)
Brand 4: Trader Joe’s Sriracha Sauce (USA)
Brand 5: Dragonfly Sriracha Hot Chili Sauce (Thailand)
Brand 6: Sriraja Panich (Thailand)
Brand 7: Thai Kitchen (Thailand)
Brand 8: Polar Sriracha Chili Sauce (Thailand)
Brand 9: Lee Kum Kee Sriracha Chili Sauce (USA)
#3: Huy Fong
- Dipping sauce
- Everything (for some)
- Salad dressing
- Stir fry
- With soy sauce