March 28, 2007


Synonymous to Japanese cuisine for most of us;
.... probably a safe favourite for unadventurous restaurant go-ers weary of raw Japanese delicacies.
Dark, thick, luscious and sweet...the Teriyaki sauce is pretty hard to resist. Jap joints often smother pork, salmon and chicken with this delectable favourite. Ever wondered what goes into this mysterious black sauce?

Sure; we crack open a bottle.... and voila~ Teriyaki!~
But do we actually question whats in it?

...Soy sauce? sugar? Japanese rice wine?
To be really honest; I never knew for sure; it was a sweet Japanese sauce..*shrug*
I could have been more inquisitive and actually made an effort to find out more; unfortunately I succumbed to the more convenient solution of a bottle at the Asian grocer. I am ashamed of myself.
We all have our lazy moments *giggle*. I; fortunately though, had a wonderful opportunity presented before me to learn everything about this very versatile sauce. Nothing like learning to make Teriyaki from someone with experience serving it up at a restaurant.
What I learnt that morning was far from what I had originally anticipated~
I watched her pull out fruit after fruit..... my jaw dropped when I saw a banana! *laughs*It took many hours of reduction. It was definitely a great learning experience for me. She assured me most sauces from restaurants weren't made this way; but this particular batch of sauce was made for her family meals; hence for health reasons, sugar proportions were minimal and fruits were used to compensate sweetness and flavour.

1 apple sliced
1 banana halved
1 onion sliced thick
1 orange sliced (leave skin on)
1 large bunch shallots (including the green leaves)
2 cups good quality soy sauce
2 cups brown sugar
4 cups water
1/3 cup cooking wine

Bring all these ingredients to a boil in a large thick base pot for 3 hours. Strain the fruit from the sauce and return dark sauce to stove top. Reduce heat to medium-low and cook for another 2 hours till sauce reduces to 2/3 of original quantity.Add in:
1 cup corn syrup

Continue stirring for 30 minutes and add in:

2-3 tbsp potato starch+ 1/2 cup water (mix)

Remove from heat immediately and stir well to combine. Leave to cool and thicken before using sauce.This recipe should make approximately 6 cups of sauce.

She poured a mini tub of sauce for me to bring home. I had a sneaky dip out of the pot as the sauce cooled. It was DELICIOUS! I was so excited to try it out~Went home to experiment with yummy Teriyaki Pork!Remember to coat the pork in some cornflour before pan-frying. Add in the sauce at the last 5 minutes and toss well to coat.

Don't worry, taste the sauce'll naturally know what to do with it after.
It goes with salmon, chicken, beef; ....get creative!.....Barbecue marinade?? ;) hehe


thanh7580 said...

I never stopped to think what was in teriyaki sauce either. Always assumed it was just soy and sugar with vinegar or something like that. A banana I would never have guessed in a million years.

Chef Jeena said...

wow I always wondered what was in a teriyaki sauce, nice blog:)

visit jeena's kitchen healthy recipe blog

Anonymous said...


u mentioned at the end to add in corn syrup. What's corn syrup and where can we get it? From the supermarket?


Anonymous said...

hello su yin,

i would like to ask bout the cooking wine that u've used. Is it the normal chinese cooking wine?


acaligurl said...

hmmmm delightful. i'm hungry!

Su-Yin -D├ęcorateur said...

anonymous: corn syrup can be bought from supermarkets here...but I'm not to sure where you are...and how to direct you. LOL; but generally corn syrup isnt too hard to find. It's a clear sticky syrup.

jess: yeap! its normal cooking (chinese) wine :)

Anonymous said...

thanks for clarifying. i'm from malaysia... i'll try to check it out when i visit the supermarket. thanks again!

Anonymous said...

Hi there, I wonder if you still check this blog. Anyway, I tried your recipe and LOVED it. A couple of things - I ended up having to add probably another 6 cups of water during cooking because otherwise it would have reduced to nothing. Also, I added a little cayenne pepper - 1/2 tsp. - near the end to give it a little kick.

This was an easy, delicious teriyaki sauce!