Thursday, May 21, 2009

Hotcha

L.A.'s hottest success story has hit the big time! Today's New York Times features a story about Sriracha Chile sauce, made by Huy Fong Foods in Rosemead, California, east of the city of Los Angeles.

Go read the linked story to learn how this ubiquitous green-capped hot-sauce began, and how Vietnamese immigrant David Tran's small family business grew into a multimillion dollar enterprise.

Most people who buy it don't even know how to pronounce it's name! I didn't, until I read the article (It's "SIR-rotch-a"). Everyone calls it Rooster Sauce, after the picture of a rooster on the label.

Although it began as a family recipe meant as a condiment for Pho, or Vietnamese beef noodle soup, Rooster Sauce is really a multicultural phenomenon. A puree of red jalapenos, garlic, vinegar, sugar and salt, it's an L.A. take on a Tran family recipe. He began selling it to Vietnamese and other Asian restaurants, to satisfy the common taste for a little hotness in many Asian cuisines. Great taste and a great price helped it's popularity spread to chile-lovers from other cultures.

In L.A. you can find Rooster Sauce on almost any restaurant table.

The label on the bottle is printed in Vietnamese, Chinese, English, French and Spanish. The name, Sriracha, comes from a village in Thailand, where chile sauces are well-known, although good old American Rooster sauce is not comparable to the complex and searing sauces known in Thai cuisine. It's kind of like comparing Grey Poupon to real Dijon mustard. But the Rooster has taken America by storm. Almost 30 years after its beginning, it's giving Tabasco a run for its money as America's favorite hot sauce.

People are using it on everything. Spicy remoulade, seared tuna steak, hollandaise sauce, even Buffalo chicken wings! It has a Facebook page! People blog about it!

I love it best with a nice bowl of Pho. I like to mix a little Sriracha and hoisin sauce together to dip the slices of rare steak up from the steamy broth. Yum! Get the Rooster!

9 comments:

Cheri @ Blog This Mom! said...

It has a FB page? LOL!

mo.stoneskin said...

I hadn't heard of that stuff but I'm tempted to go with "Rooster Sauce" for the time being!

Kate said...

I love this stuff; it's the bomb.

Tristan Robin Blakeman said...

I think I hear the call of my Prevacid....

sealaura said...

I LOVE that sauce and can't live without it. If I am not sweating, than it is not a good meal.

Beverly said...

I had some Monday evening on potstickers. Yum!

Life with Kaishon said...

I fear all things hot and spicy, but I will still buy a bottle! I think Gary will love it : ).

Woman in a Window said...

I got a box of hoisin for Christmas. Love the stuff and can't find it up here. Maybe I'll get some hot sauce next Christmas. I can only dream.

cactus petunia said...

Ooo. I love that stuff. It's a staple in our house, right along with Mae Ploy sweet chili sauce. Mmmm.