Tuesday, January 30, 2018

Chinese Orange Sauce Marinade

Everyone once in awhile I order in from the local Chinese restaurant. And no matter what I order I seem to wind up with a couple of small containers of orange sauce. Like little packs of soy sauce, which also invariably come with the meal, these containers usually elicit rolled eyes and a bank shot into the trash.

But recently I thought, maybe I can put them to good use. I know the ingredients of this cloying sauce probably aren't all that great--but I also hate to waste. So it occurred to me to use one of these containers in a marinade.

Now you can find any number of recipes for orange sauce online, so if you don't want to use these make your own. But if you, too, have been struggling with what to do with these unasked-for sauces, try this marinade. I use it for salmon, shrimp, chicken and pork--and brush it onto roasting vegetables, particularly winter squashes.

The ingredients are simple: one container of the orange sauce, soy sauce, sesame oil, spiced white vinegar (a fabulous condiment from the Philippines), one ginger-garlic flavor bomb, and the zest of a small orange.

Whisk it together and what you'll have is a sauce that combines sweet and salty, the brightness of ginger and orange zest, the depth of sesame oil, acid and heat from the vinegar, and the umami of soy sauce. It's a marinade so good you'll actually look forward to getting those containers the next time you get Chinese takeout.

Orange Sauce Marinade
(printable recipe)
Yield: 1/2 cup

3 tablespoons (1 takeout container) Chinese restaurant orange sauce
1 teaspoon sesame oil
3 tablespoons soy sauce
3 tablespoons spicy white vinegar (available at Filipino markets or 99 Ranch Market) or rice vinegar
1 ginger-garlic flavor bomb
Zest of one small orange

Combine all the ingredients and whisk together. Store unused marinate in the refrigerator.

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