Soy-based sauces are quite salty and satisfying

November 06, 1996|By Steve Petusevsky | Steve Petusevsky,FORT LAUDERDALE SUN-SENTINEL

Soy sauce, tamari and shoyu are members of a family of salty seasonings.

Soy sauce typically is made from soy, wheat, water and sea salt that is fermented in wooden kegs for many months before being pressed. Always read the label of soy sauce bottles because many contain additives such as caramel color, corn syrup and chemical preservatives. I look for brands that are additive free.

Traditionally, tamari is wheat-free soy sauce. It is a byproduct of the production of miso, a flavorful paste made from cooked fermented soybeans.

Authentic shoyu is made from soybeans, wheat, water and sea salt fermented in casks. Shoyu has a rich, complex flavor and is somewhat sweeter than tamari. Tamari has a strong, wine-like character and is more complex than shoyu. I use them interchangeably, although I prefer shoyu in more delicate dishes such as vegetables and soups.

I always add tamari, shoyu or soy sauce at the end of the cooking time because the salt will become more concentrated with prolonged cooking. Both shoyu and tamari contain about 1,000 milligrams of sodium per tablespoon. There are several low-sodium varieties of all three seasonings available.Tamari and shoyu are more expensive than common soy sauce because of the lengthy manufacturing process and quality of the ingredients.

Pub Date: 11/06/96

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