Xu Hướng 3/2023 # Nuoc Cham (Vietnamese Fish Sauce) # Top 4 View | Raffles-hanoi.edu.vn

Xu Hướng 3/2023 # Nuoc Cham (Vietnamese Fish Sauce) # Top 4 View

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Studded with spicy Thai chilies and fresh garlic, this Vietnamese dipping sauce, or Nuoc Cham, is a staple of Vietnamese cooking – plus it’s ready in 5 minutes!

Consisting of fish sauce, garlic, chilies, sugar and lime juice, this sauce is the epitome of Vietnamese flavors – it’s sweet, salty, sour and spicy.

The result is an incredibly flavorful “umami” dipping sauce that is almost drinkable…seriously…it’s that good. Make it ahead and store it in the fridge (in a covered container) as it will last a long time.

There are only a handful of ingredients used here – fish sauce, lime, coconut (or palm) sugar, garlic and chilies.

You can use either coconut sugar or palm sugar for this recipe. I love the flavor of palm sugar personally, but coconut sugar works as well. Buy palm sugar HERE on Amazon ( affiliate link).

Thai chilies can be left out, but I think they impart an incredible spicy flavor to the sauce love to include them. If you can’t find them, you can also thinly slice a serrano pepper and use that.

Fresh lime juice is a MUST. Do not use bottled lime juice or the flavor will be all wrong. I actually almost never recommend using bottled lime juice as the flavor is so different than fresh.

What is Fish Sauce?

Fish sauce is a sauce made from anchovies fermented in salt. While the smell can sometimes be strong, the flavor is out of this world delicious. When added to marinades and sauces, it does not have a fishy flavor as you would expect. It just adds a wonderful savory flavor.

My favorite fish sauce to use is Red Boat 40

Check out these 20+ ways to use fish sauce!

Step By Step Instructions

They key to this sauce is getting the flavor balance correct. Whisk together the lime juice, water and sugar until the sugar has dissolved.

**for a sweeter sauce like you find in many restaurant in America, reduce the amount of fish sauce to 5 tablespoons.

Add the chilies and garlic and let it stand for 20 minutes at room temperature before serving. The amount of chilies can be adjusted based on spice preference.

It’s also incredible served as a dipping sauce for these Vietnamese Egg Rolls or these Chicken Summer Rolls.

And if you have simple grilled meat, pork, chicken or even seafood, you can just dip it in this sauce for a boost of flavor.

Adjust the amount of chilies to your spice preference. Remember that Thai chilies can be extremely spicy.

Use warm water to help the sugar dissolve.

Add the fish sauce slowly, tasting along the way, until you get the perfect flavor. You may have to add more/less depending on your preference.

For a sweeter nuoc cham, reduce the amount of fish sauce to 5 tablespoons.

Reader’s Favorite Vietnamese Recipes

Guide To Vietnamese Fish Sauce Nuoc Cham

You’ve dined at Vietnamese restaurants many times and you’ve always noticed the small bowl of sauce that accompanied your fried spring rolls and noodle salad known as bún bò xào. You’ve been mystified by its complex flavors and you’ve wondered what’s in it that makes it so good. Wonder no more.

Understanding Fish Sauce

To really understand the sauce, it helps to learn a few terms. Nước mắm is a fermented fish sauce. The ubiquitous fish sauce is known by different names throughout Southeast Asia. It is called in Thailand, nam pa in Laos, ngan bya yay in Myanmar and patis in the Philippines. It is used to season food during cooking and it is also a condiment served as a dipping sauce to accompany cooked dishes.

Just as the Italians grade olive oil in accordance with purity, so do the Vietnamese with their nước mắm.

The Quality of Fish Sauce

An article on a Vietnamese website describes the fermentation process in detail: As soon as fishing boats return with their catch, the fish are rinsed and drained, then mixed with sea salt-two to three parts fish to one part salt by weight. They are then pressed into large earthenware jars, lined on the bottom with a layer of salt, and topped with a layer of salt. A woven bamboo mat is placed over the fish and weighed down with heavy rocks to prevent the fish floating when the water inside them is extracted by the salt and fermentation process. The jars are covered and left in the sun for nine months to a year.

The flavor takes time to develop, as the article goes on to explain: From time to time, they are uncovered to expose the mixture to direct, hot sunshine, which helps to ‘digest’ the fish and turn it into a fluid. Periodic ‘sunning’ produces a superior fragrant fish sauce with a clear, reddish-brown color. Eventually, the liquid is removed from the jars, preferably through a spigot on the bottom so that it passes through the layers of fish remains. Any sediment is removed and the filtered fish sauce is transferred to clean jars and allowed to air in the sun for a couple of weeks to dissipate the strong fishy odor. It is then ready for bottling. The finished product is 100 percent, top-grade, genuine fish sauce.

The grading process depends greatly upon how the fish sauce was made: Second- and third-grade fish sauces are made by adding salt water to cover the fish remains, leaving them for 2 to 3 months each time, then filtering before bottling. Finally, the fish remains are boiled with saltwater, then strained out and discarded, to produce the lowest grade fish sauce; or they may be added to other fish remains from the first fermentation in the process of making a second-grade sauce. Because the flavor is substantially reduced with each fermentation, top-grade fish sauce is frequently added to the lower grades to improve their flavor. In practice, few manufacturers market top-grade fish sauce, mixing it with second and third-grade sauces instead in order to produce larger quantities that can still qualify as genuine fish sauce.

It is interesting to note that it seems impossible to get access to premium-grade nước mắm.

If nước mắm is the bottled fish sauce, what is dipping sauce that goes with fried spring rolls? Nước chấm is a dipping sauce, in general. Nước mắm pha is a mixed fish sauce. At its most basic, nước mắm pha contains lime juice and/or vinegar, fish sauce, sugar, and water. Optional ingredients include bird’s eye chilies and garlic.

How Fish Sauce Is Prepared

Nước mắm pha is prepared differently throughout Vietnam. In the north, the basic mixture is diluted with broth. In the central region of the country, the sauce uses less water and is, therefore, bolder. In the south, coconut water is added to nước mắm pha. Some recipes recommend boiling the sugar in water to completely dissolve it; others instruct that all the ingredients be simply shaken in a jar.

The color and flavor of nước mắm pha are affected by the color and the grade of the nước mắm. Nước mắm pha in southern Vietnam also tends to be darker because palm sugar is used.

Vietnamese Fish Sauce Dipping Sauce: Nuoc Cham / Nuoc Mam · I Am A Food Blog

Every household has their own fish sauce recipe and that’s the way it should be – everyone’s nước chấm tastes slightly different. This particular recipe is based off of my mother-in-law’s fish sauce, which is the best in the world, hands down. Of course, way back in the day, when I asked her how to make it, it was the classic, “a little bit of this, a little bit of that” style teaching that everyone in that generation seems to do. But, she took the time to take me through it step-by-step and now I like to think that my nước chấm would be a very strong contender in a fish sauce throw down. But not a literal throw down because damn, you would not be able to get rid of the smell for days.

Anyway, how you do it, according to my mẹ chồng (that’s mom-in-law in Vietnamese!) is this:

Put a clove of garlic in a mortar and pestle. Pound it lightly and then add a chili and mash them together. Add a biggish handful of sugar and pound them together until the sugar turns pink and is super deliciously spicy and garlic-y smelling. Move the chili-garlic-sugar to a bowl and stir in some water then squeeze in half a lime. Pour in fish sauce until the color is a perfect light amber. Taste and adjust and you’re done!

That’s essentially how I make fish sauce now, but I use the help of measurements so I get the same results every time. This recipe below will make a fish sauce that’s sweet and a little spicy with just the right amount of garlic and lime. Feel free to adjust and play around with the ratios though! Mike thinks my fish sauce is slightly on the sweeter side so when he makes it he dials down the sugar a bit and always adds in an extra chili or two. The most important part is crushing the garlic and chili into the sugar with a mortar and pestle so you get a nice fragrant spicy sugar before mixing in the water and lime. Oh, and you always mix in the fish sauce at the end.

PS – In case you’re interested in, even though I refer to mixed fish sauce as nước chấm in this post, Mike’s family calls it nước mắm, which is what it really should be because nước chấm actually means dipping sauces and can include things like peanut sauce and the like. Nước mắm pha is literally mixed fish sauce and the most well known of the nước chấms. (Picture a blazing rainbow star…. The More You Know)

Crush the garlic, chili and sugar together in a mortar and pestle until the garlic and chili are crushed to tiny pieces and the sugar is spicy and fragrant. Alternatively, you can stir minced garlic and sliced chilis into the sugar. Dissolve the sugar, garlic and chili mixture with the water then add the lime juice. Mix well then add the fish sauce. It’s best to let the fish sauce sit in the fridge for a day or so for the flavors to meld before using, but you can definitely use it right away if you need to.

Notes: This sauce is on the sweet side, which is how I like it, but feel free to play around with and adjust the proportions as you see fit. I’d say start with 2-3 tablespoons of sugar and go from there.

Also, sometimes we like to use more of a slightly thicker more viscous sauce – to do this, simply reduce down the amount of water you add.

Vietnamese Dipping Sauce (Nuoc Cham)



This Vietnamese Dipping Sauce (Nuoc Cham) is one of my favorite Paleo and Keto salad dressings. From spring roll dipping sauce to noodle dishes. This is the must-have condiment for Vietnamese food lovers!

Use my Keto Nuoc Cham for Vietnamese noodle salad, Vietnamese air fryer chicken wings, and Vietnamese lemongrass chicken!

Nuoc Cham is a sweet, sour, and salty condiment that is served with virtually every Vietnamese dish. I love using it as a dipping sauce for my Paleo spring rolls or drizzle it over Vietnamese lemongrass chicken noodle bowls. Today’s Vietnamese dipping sauce recipe is for keto and paleo users.

Nước Chấm Pronunciation

Nuoc [nook] Cham [chum]

How long does nuoc cham last in the fridge?

If store in a glass and airtight container in the fridge, nuoc cham should last 3-4 weeks. The chili and garlic flavor might become stronger overtime. Use a clean spoon every time to keep the sauce fresh.

Does fish sauce have shellfish?

I only use one brand of fish sauce – Red Boat – and it contains dry anchovies and sea salt. Red Boat fish sauce does not have shellfish and it’s my go-to for Thai and Vietnamese cookings.

How do you make Vietnamese dipping fish sauce?

To make Paleo and Keto Vietnamese Sauce (Nuoc Cham), you’ll need –

Lime juice

Fish sauce

Rice vinegar

Warm water

Keto honey (product link in profile), honey, or maple syrup

Garlic cloves

Thai chilis or serrano chili pepper

Vietnamese Dipping Sauce Pairings

More Healthy Easy Paleo Salad Dressings





Vietnamese Dipping Sauce (Nuoc Cham) – Paleo Keto

This Vietnamese Dipping Sauce (Nuoc Cham) is one of my favorite Paleo and Keto salad dressings. From spring roll dipping sauce to noodle dishes. This is the must-have condiment for Vietnamese food lovers! Makes about 3/4 cup.

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The nutritional label is calculated per tablespoon with Keto honey.






















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Tag @iheartumami.ny on Instagram and hashtag it #iheartumami

More Awesome Recipes to Try with Keto Nuoc Cham Sauce



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