LKK Spicy Bean Paste – 麻婆醬

LKK Spicy Bean Paste –  麻婆醬 – Ma Po Sauce

The Lee Kum Kee Company is known worldwide for high quality cooking products, and I always have at least a few of their specialties on hand. Their Spicy Bean Sauce is described as being a ‘Ma Po Sauce’, and even has a recipe for a simple version of the classic Chinese dish Ma Po Tofu on the label (and also at the website). Unfortunately, even a review of the ingredients makes clear that this sauce departs considerably far from the traditional Ma Po composition and, in that sense at least, Lee Kum Kee has rather failed here. That being said, though, as a generic ‘Spicy Bean Sauce’, it has terrific flavor and makes for a very useful and versatile sauce base for all sorts of other dishes.

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Cock Brand Chili Paste with Holy Basil

Cock™ Chili Paste with Holy Basil: A Review

I have purchased quite a number of Cock Brand™ products over the years and have never been disappointed. Their Chili Paste with Holy Basil, seen pictured above, was actually purchased on a whim, put in a store cupboard, and then forgotten about for a while. When I finally opened it, however, I was very glad to have made the purchase as it turned out to be a terrific sauce for quickly putting together Thai-style Stir-fried dishes.

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Yeo Minced Prawns in Spices
Yeo Minced Prawns in Spices

Yeo Minced Prawns in Spices Review

I fell in love with this umami-rich shrimp paste from Singapore after first purchasing at a little Asian grocery store in Fredericton, New Brunswick almost 40 years ago. It is produced by Yeo Hiap Seung Ltd., and is made with Shrimp, Chili, Onions and Peanuts as the main ingredients. The shrimp are clearly fermented slightly during the manufacturing process, and the result is quite similar to a Filipino Bagoóng Alamáng, or even a Sambal Ikan Bilis. It is sold mainly as a cookery ingredient, especially for soups and noodle dishes, but I find that it shines best as a cold condiment.

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Singlong Sambal Ikan Bilis
Singlong Sambal Ikan Bilis

Singlong Sambal Ikan Bilis Review

In my post featuring the Huy Fong Brand Sambal Oelek, I mentioned that a Sambal is an Indonesian chili paste and that the Sambal Oelek is the simplest, and the one on which all other are based. A Sambal Ikan Bilis builds on the basic recipe of red chili peppers and salt by enhancing it with the addition of dried Anchovies, or ‘Ikan Bilis’, as they are known in Indonesia.

This commercial product, made by the Singlong Company in Singapore is certainly a Sambal Ikan Bilis in that it is a chili paste with anchovy added, but it also includes several other flavorings as well. It may not be the absolute best representative of its class, but it is still a pretty decent product.


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