Published: September 24, 2018

These seasoning ingredients aren’t those I used every day but for particular foods I like.

From left to right
Back row
Five spices marinade 卤水汁 – I sometimes make my own marinade with spices and other ingredients. But it’s much easier with this bottled marinade. It’s mainly made of water, sugar, soysauce, rice wine and selected spices, such as star anise, cumin, peppercorn, etc. It can be used in making marinated egg, chicken wing, etc.;
Sesame seed paste (up) 芝麻酱 – for salad or hotpot dip;
Chu Hou sause (down) 柱候酱 – this is a very Cantonese sauce that hardly seen being used in other cuisines. Typical dish used this sauce is Stewed Beef Brisket and Radish 柱候萝卜牛腩. And I also season fried vegetables with it;
Melachan (up) 马拉盏 – Traditional Cantonese cuisine has got influences from Southeast Asian cuisines, or they have influenced each other. I use this sauce to fry with vegetables, especially water spinach 马拉盏炒通菜;
Satay sauce (down) 沙爹酱 – another Southeast Asian sauce. Satay chicken, satay beef are so delicious!
Chili garlic sauce (up) 蒜蓉辣椒酱 – the spiciness of the sauce is very mild. Traditionally there is not much spicy food in Cantonese cuisine. My parents and a lot of my families, especially elder families haven’t been able to eat any spicy food. But I am a big fan of spicy food. I remember it was since I went to college, I have traveled, worked in different places and have met people from different cultures. I have learnt to appreciate and respect foods in various cultures;
Home-made chili sauce (down) – I made this jar of chili sauce with dry red chili flakes, peppercorn and sesame seed. This is the proportion I like. It’s quite spicy and I always use it for spicy dumplings 红油抄手 or warm salad 凉拌;
Crispy chili flakes in oil 香油脆辣椒 – this brand of chili sauce was once ranked one of the best chili sauce in the world. It’s so well-know that many households would always keep one jar home;
Chili oil;
Preserved beancurd 腐乳 – this is Cantonese preserved beancurd. I’ve tried many other types but Cantonese style is still my favourite. I usually have congee with it or spread steamed bun with it. And it can season vegetables, most popular one is water spinach 腐乳炒通菜;

Dry red chili – there are different types of dry red chili. I use this quite often;
Mixed spices;
Raw slab sugar – usually for sweetening sweet soups.

Yes, people would say you could make your own marinade, satay, chili sauce, etc. But there are a plenty of good choices in the market, why bother?

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