Vietnamese Must-Have Table Sauce
Nuoc cham is the basic Vietnamese sauce that goes on the table at almost every meal. It brings out the flavors of the food and sparks the appetite. Everyone has a favorite version: This one includes a little vinegar, which gives it a fresh sharp edge. Even if the amount of sugar seems high to you when you make it for the first time, try it this way at least once before you start making adjustments.
Total Timeunder 15 minutes
Make Ahead RecipeYes
Dietary Considerationegg-free, gluten-free, low-fat, peanut free, tree nut free
Taste and Texturegarlicky, savory, sharp, sweet, tart
Type of DishCondiments, sauces
- ¼ cup fresh lime juice
- ¼ cup Vietnamese or Thai fish sauce
- ¼ cup water
- 2 teaspoons rice or cider vinegar
- 1 tablespoon sugar
- 1 small clove garlic, minced
- 1 bird chile, minced
- Several shreds of carrot (optional)
Combine all the ingredients in a bowl and stir to dissolve the sugar completely.
Serve in one or more small condiment bowls.
Store in a tightly sealed glass container in the refrigerator for up to 3 days (after that, the garlic starts to taste tired).
2000 Jeffrey Alford and Naomi Dugid