Chef Hanson’s Special Secret Fish Sauce


1 bottle your favourite fish sauce

2-3 dried Mexican chilies (I love to use Pasilla, Guajillo or Morita)

3 Thai chilies

3 cloves garlic

1 shallot

Small bunch of cilantro stems

1 knob of ginger (if desired)


  1. Mix everything in a mason jar and let it sit in the fridge for three days. Strain if the flavour is where you want it at that point, or leave longer to allow flavours to deepen.
  2. I’ll use this fish sauce to pour over rice or as a base in marinades, but my favourite is smoked fish drizzled with fish sauce, sesame oil, soy sauce, and fresh lime juice. You get bonus points if you layer fresh shallot, garlic, and chilies on top of the fish before you smoke it.
  3. Serve with greens or rice.

This recipe is a loose guideline — not a blueprint. Feel free to add anything you want! My most recent batch had avocado and eucalyptus leaves in it.

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