How do you make the Brown Sauce that Chinese Restaurants serve (for ex over a salmon/vegetable dish)?

There is a delicious brown sauce that my local Chinese Restaurant has - I get it with a roasted salmon and vegetables dish. It's dark brown, very tasty, and it's the sauce that the vegetables are swimming in.

Actually, it's a "black bean sauce", but I'd be willing to try a recipe for standard tasty brown sauce too, if black bean sauce is not easily found.

How can I make this sauce?


No, I"m not talking about soy sauce. What I'm asking about it a medium-thick and tasty brown sauce that comes with some Chinese meals. It's part of the meal - not a sauce you add later. It's the sauce that the vegs are swimming in.

4 Answers

  • 1 decade ago
    Favorite Answer

    I am a former chef and it is a standard one, usually a bit of chicken stock, soya sauce, sugar, garlic and oyster sauce, thickened with a cornstarch slurry, black bean sauce is abit more complicated, it is a mash of garlic, ginger, salted and rinsed black beans cooked in oi, then add green and white onions and saute, add some stock, seasonings like salt, soya, sugar a bit of sesame oil and thicken like the other sauce.

    Now you can make this for chicken, pork and spare ribs, beef and noodle even on fish steamed in a bamboo streamer, I like it with seafood to, shrimp, clams and mussel even squid is nice done with it.

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  • 1 decade ago

    The thickness is achieved by adding corn starch solution. Mix corn starch in water - except hot water - and add it in when the food is cooked, one minute before you turn the heat off. Amount: 2 tablespoons worth to 4 ounces of water max, should be enough for 1 to 2 person's portion. Give or take to taste. The heat in cooking is what coagulates the corn starch, so if you did it in the hot water, it'd be gooey.

    The sauce actually coagulates the seasonings, including soy sauce that was provided in the previous answer. Most often you'll find minced garlic, maybe even a pinch of sugar, and/or a dash of vinegar and cooking wine in the mix. Experiment with it.

    It is probably most common in Cantonese style of stir frying. Stir frying requires a very hot wok/pot/pan. With cooking oil heated on high, until you see oil begin to smoke. The purpose is to use not only the heat provided underneath, but the heat accumulated within the cooking oil, to cook the ingredients until done, in a very fast pace. If you got to see some of the Asian restaurants' kitchens, you'd see flames shooting up high - sometimes into the wok itself. Could be duplicated at home if you have a gas range, but be aware of fire hazard, as missing one eyebrow after cooking is really not a Halloween tradition.

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  • V B
    Lv 4
    1 decade ago

    as a long time cooker and eater of Chinese food - its probably some mix of oyster sauce (the brown stuff) and oils and soy sauce.

    im sure you can make oyster sauce,but is it prety cheap in almost any Asian grocery store.

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  • 1 decade ago

    soya sauce?

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