Every chef has their favorite condiments, perhaps it’s their secret ingredient, perhaps it’s the final touch that makes a dish ‘sing.’
As I write this, I realize I have quite a collection (yet not as many as my client, shown above). I find that I use’m sporadically, like the Orange Blossom Water — I haven’t used it in many moons, and then, I’ll prolly use it for a week or so, and then switch to another.
My refrigerator is organized, I’m happy to announce, with all the vinegars in one area, all the sweet condiments in another area, and all the other miscellaneous condiments in another area. (Side note: I typed ‘miscellaneous‘ without that red line showing up under it indicating wrong spelling, cool!)
YES – I keep the vinegars in the fridge, the temperature in the kitchen changes often, 20 degrees sometimes, so, the more stable temperature of the fridge will give’m a longer life span, maintaining their flavor.
In my pantry are groupings of salts (7 of them), oils (a dozen of’m), nut butters. I’ll write more about these another time.
In the garage refrigerator are nuts, seeds, spices, herbs, dried fruit, fresh veggies(mostly from my CSA box).
BTW – the freezers have misc fruits, veggies, meats, bones, leftovers.
NOTE: This post was inspired from questions by folks in the Kaiser weight management program, click here to see their questions, my answers.
Here is a list of my fav condiments, most– are in my fridge right now:
- Crushed garlic
- Crushed ginger
- Demi-glace (the mushroom version is vegan, from William-Sonoma)
- Oregano water
Salty sour umami* condiments
- Red miso
- Black miso
- Tamari (I get the gluten-free version)
- Bragg’s Amino Acids
- Green olives (some with pimento)
- Mushroom steak sauce
- Fish sauce, oyster sauce, shrimp sauce
Sweet sour umami* condiments
- Red wine
- Balsamic vinegar
- Candied ginger pieces
- Candied orange peel
- Black olives
Salty sour condiments
- Umeboshi plum vinegar
- White miso
- Yellow miso
- Preserved lemons
Sweet sour condiments
- Sweet miso
- Tamarind paste
- Teriyaki sauce
- Hoison sauce
- White wine
- Apple cider vinegar
- Most white vinegars (champagne vinegar, white wine vinegar, rice vinegar)
Sweet sour spicy condiments
- Dijon mustard
- Spicy brown mustard
- Sweet chili sauce
- Mole sauce
- BBQ sauce
- Cocktail sauce
- Tabasco sauce
Sweet sour salty condiments
- Sweet miso
- Umeboshi plum paste
- Red curry paste
- Green curry paste
- Crushed horseradish
- Orange blossom water
- Rose water
- Apple butter
- Maple syrup
Where to find ethnic condiments
- Click here for a list of –pretty much all– ethnic condiments
- Ethnic markets, farmer’s markets
- Trader Joe’s, Whole Foods, Sprouts, New Leaf
- In Cupertino: Monta Vista Market
Low fat, gluten free condiments
Words to live by: read the ingredient list before buying, make sure it meets your standards.
For those who need gluten-free condiments, it’s best to follow this (very long) list of ingredients to avoid, click here.
Also, for those with Celiac (who need to be very strict) it’s best to call the company often(!) to make sure their product is still ‘GLUTEN’ free.
*Umami flavor has one, or all, of these notes: deep, earthy, musky, aged. Click here to read more about umami flavors.