I'm getting old and the brain fails but I don't remember on which site we discussed favorite fish sauces but I think Bob Henrick asked the question on which fish sauce was recommended and I do remember that Jenise, I and maybe one or two others really liked the Three Crabs
brand - the one with the pink label that has three crabs on it. Well, on one of my recent research forays on Thai cusine, I stumbled across this most excellent site http://www.thaifoodandtravel.com/index.html
which delves quite deeply (without monotony) into the Thai experience based on Kasma Loha-unchit's
writings. Kasma grew up in Thailand and has been teaching the craft of Thai cusine in San Fran since 1985. A cookbook author to boot, her books are: It Rains Fishes: Legends, Traditions and the Joys of Thai Cooking
and Dancing Shrimp: Favorite Thai Recipes for Seafood
, the latter published by Simon & Schuster.
One of the sections in the site goes into length about her favorite Thai ingredient brands and why she chooses them. http://www.thaifoodandtravel.com/brands.html
She talks about fish sauce, again at length, and here's what she says about Three Crabs:
"I do not personally recommend Three Crabs Brand, which several Asian cookbook authors recommend, mainly because it does not appear to be a naturally fermented fish sauce but is, rather, a flavor-enhanced, processed food product. According to the label, hydrolyzed wheat protein and fructose are among the ingredients – both are additives that have not been adequately time-tested for their potential long-term effects on health. Their inclusion suggests that the sauce is made through the process of hydrolysis, whereby a catalyst (sometimes from chemical sources) is added to hasten fermentation, allowing the company to produce large quantities of the product in shorter periods of time than would be required in natural fermentation.
It also appears suspicious that the label states that the fish sauce is a product of Thailand but is "processed in Hong Kong," further indicating that it is more highly processed than naturally fermented fish sauce. When compared with high-quality, naturally fermented fish sauces, the additives in Three Crabs Brand, to the discerning palate, gives this fish sauce a somewhat metallic, artificial after-taste. Since there are a number of excellent natural fish sauces, produced as has been traditionally done for generations, on the market, my preference is to stay with the traditionally made and time-tested products."(cited from http://www.thaifoodandtravel.com/featur ... tml#3crabs
Processed food product !?! Ugh! I'm going to seek out the Golden Boy brand she touts and taste the difference. I'll bet she's right on!!
Anyone tried the Golden Boy brand?