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A classic sauce for use with seafood, meats, and vegetables
Chinese Black Bean Sauce (aka Black Bean Paste)
By Kimberly Killebrew, author of the Daring Gourmet blog.
Prep time 5 minutes; Cook time 15 minutes; Total time 20 minutes
Makes about ¾ cup
3 tablespoons fermented black beans*, soaked in water about an hour then rinsed and drained (if you prefer a stronger and saltier flavor, use more beans)
2 tablespoons extra virgin olive or macadmia nut oil
2 tablespoons finely minced garlic
2 tablespoons finely minced ginger
2 green onions, finely chopped
½ cup vegetable or chicken broth
2 tablespoons Chinese rice wine or dry sherry
1 tablespoon soy sauce
1 teaspoon sugar (optional)
½ teaspoon rice vinegar
½ to 1 teaspoon hot red pepper sauce or sambal oelek, for heat (optional)
1½ teaspoons cornstarch dissolved in 1 tablespoon water
*Find fermented black soybeans in well-stocked supermarkets and Asian grocery stores, or buy them online.
- Mash soaked and drained fermented black beans with a fork and set aside.
Heat the oil in a small saucepan over medium-high heat. Add the garlic and ginger and cook for a minute or two until softened and very fragrant. Add the green onions and cook for another minute. Add the mashed beans and cook for another minute.
- Add all remaining ingredients, except for the cornstarch mixture, and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat to medium and simmer uncovered for 10-12 minutes or until the liquid is reduced by half. Stir in the cornstarch mixture and simmer for another minute or until thickened.
- Let the black bean sauce cool and store in an airtight container (preferably glass). Will keep for up to 2 weeks.