Ponzu sauce is without doubt one of the methods I wish to put a dent within the regular provide of off-beat citrus rising on our terrace this time of 12 months. Ponzu is usually utilized in Japanese (and Japanese-influenced) dishes and making your individual permits for some citrus-centric experimentation. Should you’re aiming to make a greater model of a grocery retailer ponzu sauce you’ll possible hit the citrus observe by utilizing lemon, however I like to make it with Meyer lemons, yuzu, makrut lime or oro blanco grapefruit (or a mix). My favourite is ponzu sauce made with Rangpur lime. It’s a bit tangy, a lot salty, perfumed with citrus – excellent in and on so many issues.
The Origins of Ponzu
This is usually a bit complicated, however let’s dive it. If you wish to geek out on ponzu, poke round on the web a bit, after which learn this and this. They’re essentially the most fascinating articles I’ve examine ponzu. That stated, once you purchase ponzu within the U.S. or see it referred to as for in English-language cookbooks, the idea is that ponzu is made with soy sauce, citrus, vinegar, and so forth. That’s the recipe on this web page, however there may be extra to know.
Based on Sceaphierde’s article, ponzu was launched by the Dutch to Nagasaki throughout the Edo interval. Almost each different web page about ponzu will ship a boilerplate about how the phrase ponzu will be damaged down into two components: pon, associated to the Dutch phrase pons, that means punch (the beverage); and the Japanese phrase su that means vinegar. However what these pages have a tendency to depart out is that this – that ponzu was yellow (or not darkish). It looks like it could have been a citrus alcohol beverage of the Dutch – no soy sauce. Over time ponzu has advanced. The ponzu you’re possible imagining, or the recipe you’re searching for, might be extra alongside the strains of “true” ponzu mixed with soy sauce – ajipon – taste (aji) and (pon) ponzu. Or ponzu shoyu – in response to Naoko Takei Moore in her Donabe cookbook, “it’s extra generally known as ponzu.” That’s what we’re rolling with right here.
How To Make Ponzu Sauce
I wish to make ponzu utilizing the approach I discovered from Tadashi Ono and Harris Salat’s The Japanese Grill (Ten Pace Press 2011). I’ve landed on a ratio of elements that I’ve tweaked to my liking through the years. The model you’ll see under tends to be a bit citrus-forward, pulled again on the vinegar a shade. To make ponzu sauce you mix soy sauce, mirin, sake, citrus juice, water, kombu, and shaved bonito flakes (katsuobushi). You permit the elements to steep for a time period. Then pressure and bottle.
Vegetarian Ponzu Sauce
To make the vegetarian ponzu sauce we use right here at dwelling, I omit the bonito flakes and as a substitute use dried mushrooms. Dried shiitake are the apparent alternative right here for his or her sea-forward taste notes, however I usually attain for dried porcini mushrooms. They’re a powerhouse of taste, umami, and I really feel like they spherical out the ponzu properly. Mess around to see what you want!
To Prepare dinner or Not?
Plenty of ponzu sauce recipes you’ll see may have you cook dinner all (or most) of the elements collectively. That’s not what you’ll see right here and it’s a part of what I’ve all the time appreciated in regards to the strategy Harris and Tadashi take. The one elements you cook dinner collectively are the sake and mirin. The 2 elements cool to room temperature earlier than they’re mixed with the citrus juice, vinegar, seaweed, and so forth. It leads to a ponzu with clear strains and a directness that may be muddled with a cooked model. Think about sizzling, cooked orange or lemon juice in comparison with freshly squeezed – they’re simply totally different beasts altogether. So I persist with this model, not sizzling plus an in a single day steeping. You’ll be able to, after all, mess around – do a delicate steeping with a warmed model, and so forth. Or cook dinner every thing and maintain again the citrus till late. And you may, after all, experiment with how lengthy you permit the elements to co-mingle. I wish to go in a single day.
Methods to Use Ponzu
Ponzu can be utilized in so many dishes – think about tart, tangy, and salt accents all at play collectively. It makes a fantastic marinade for tofu and mushrooms. Splashed over noodles or rice is a no brainer. I additionally find it irresistible as a part in salad dressings, skip the salt and add ponzu to style to your favourite French dressing. I simply used this ponzu for these Baked Mushrooms with Miso Butter (pictured above).