There are so many uses for this sweet and spicy chili sauce – my personal favorite is simply spreading cream cheese on a cracker with a touch of this as a topping. Simplicity at it’s best! It’s also amazing on bbq beef ribs, as a glaze on chicken, or lightly sauteed with asparagus and olive oil. There’s more – you are only limited by your imagination with this versatile sauce.

Note: Use this with the Pineapple Salsa Recipe by Chef Hector of the Polynesian Cultural Center.

Ingredients:

½ cup rice vinegar

3/4 cup water

1/2 – 2/3 cup white or raw cane sugar (to taste)

5 small to medium garlic cloves, minced

1 tbsp soy sauce (can substitute with gluten-free or low sodium soy sauce, depending on preference) OR 1/2 tbsp fish sauce (click here to see a vegan version of fish sauce)

2 ½ tbl sambal oelek

4 tsp cornstarch or one pkg knox unflavored gelatin

2 tbsp water

photograph of fresh minced garlic

Garlic should be evenly minced before adding to the other ingredients

Instructions:

  1. Using a non-stick pan, heat vinegar, water, sugar, garlic cloves, and soy sauce in a non-stick pan.
  2. Warm over medium heat, stirring constantly until sugar is dissolved. Increase the heat to medium-high and bring it to a boil. I like to simmer it for approximately 2 minutes to soften the garlic.
  3. Mix  in the sambal oelek. Place back on the burner and heat again for 3-4 minutes while gently stirring.
  4. Mix the cornstarch or gelatin and water into a smooth slurry and add this to the sauce as well.
    1. NOTE: I thicken with gelatin because I love to can, and cornstarch will not hold up as well when canning or when it is mixed with cold foods. Also, unflavored gelatin is a protein, while cornstarch is a starch.
  5. Turn down the heat to medium, and simmer the sauce for 2 – 4 minutes. Make sure to stir constantly so that it does not burn. The sauce will thicken as it cools.
  6. Pour into glass jars with air-tight lids (OR heated and sterilized jars to store for longer).
  7. Allow to cool. Store in the refrigerator.

 

photo of seasoned breadfruit snacks fresh from the oven

Want to really make an impression? Make your own oven baked ulu chips to complete this presentation.

Nina Jones, a mainland gal from way back, is now a transplanted Islander. With her husband of 43 years, she has lived in Laie since serving a mission at the Polynesian Cultural Center from 2014 – 2016. She now serves as the blog manager for the Center. Her hobbies include swimming, traveling, studying and writing about what she is learning from the various Polynesian cultures. Her blogs focus on their history, beliefs, practices and – as an added bonus – delicious food! To her, Polynesia is not just a place to visit, it is a way to live and she is very honored to be able to be a part of their amazing world.

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