Time: 10-15 minutes
This sauce delivers a little bit of sweetness, a touch of saltiness and a hint of smoke which makes it perfect for putting on almost, well ... everything. I love the flavor combination in this sauce so much that I found myself throwing together slight variations of it week after week to drizzle over soup or noodles or to marinate tofu in. Although whipping up this sauce is quick and easy, there's no reason it can't be made in a larger batch, then used throughout the week as needed. This sauce has an array of uses, including:
- a marinade for thoroughly pressed tofu;
- a sauce for drizzling over cooked noodles, soups and greens; and
- a glaze for grilled/sauteed tofu (see METHOD below on how to thicken it)
Thai chilis are completely optional here, of course, and can be subbed with something milder, like a squirt of sriracha or roasted red chili paste, or left out altogether. The sauce will still produce a mild yet flavorful all-purpose staple in your kitchen.
2 TB dark sesame oil
1 TB fresh ginger, grated or finely minced
1 TB garlic, grated or finely minced
2/3 cup mirin or broth
2 TB soy sauce or liquid aminos
1 tsp rice vinegar
1 TB brown sugar or raw agave syrup
1-2 fresh thai chilis, sliced or sriracha or red pepper flakes (optional)
Heat the sesame oil in a small saucepan over low heat. Add the ginger and garlic into the oil and stir. Allow to soften and slightly mellow for a few minutes, but don't allow it to brown.
Turn the heat up to medium, then add in the mirin, soy sauce, vinegar and sugar or agave. Allow the mixture to come to a very small simmer for a minute or two. If using brown sugar, allow it to dissolve completely.
Remove it from the heat and allow it to cool. Add in the thai chilis or sriracha if you want it spicy.
Store in a glass container for up to a week in the refrigerator.
To thicken the sauce, dissolve 1 rounded teaspoon of cornstarch in 1 tablespoon of cold water. Place half of sauce into a small saucepan and bring to a very small simmer. Pour the cornstarch/water mixture into the sauce and stir with a rubber spatula or whisk until thick. Remove from the heat and pour over sauteed or grilled tofu.