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Sriracha from Thailand


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The internet is full of ludicrous accounts of how Sriracha sauce was invented by a "David" Chan in the USA in the 1980s. Nonsense. The origin of of Sriracha is well documented. It was invented in the 1930s by Ms. Thanom Chakkapak, from the town of Si Racha, an hour’s drive south of Bangkok, Thailand. She called her sauce Sriraja Panich. the name under which it is still sold.

 

1598638273_SrirajaPanich.thumb.jpg.512b700bac177b45ba9aa690c43bf5fe.jpg

Sriraja Panich

 

In 1978, a Chinese-Vietnamese man named Chan, emigrated to the USA in 1978 and set up Huy Fong, named after the ship that brought him and his family to the USA. He manufactured the sauce which has become known to the world as Sriracha, based on the original recipe. It is no coincidence that the only language other than English of a bottle of Mr Chan’s product as sold in the US is Vietnamese, not Thai.

 

Neither Ms. Chakkapak nor Chan thought to trademark the name “Sriracha”, so it is now considered a generic term, available for anyone to use.

 

However, the original sauce was a dipping sauce and is tangier and runnier than what has become known informally as “rooster sauce”.

 

Unfortunately, perhaps, in recent years, the success of Huy Yong has resulted in Thai manufacturers copying the American recipe and marketing devices such as the bottle shape and distinctive logos, in the hope of grabbing some export trade. Damn! They also copy the Vietnamese!

 

Rooster brand has been introduced to Thailand and the Thais are fighting back.

 

Ms. Chakkapak’s Sriraja Panich is sometimes available in the USA check out Amazon, Whole Foods etc) but it remains rare. It is slightly more available here in China, with Thailand being a lot nearer!

 

The one I used in the China Food Deliveries post which prompted this topic, was one of the American recipe clones. Made in Bangkok. I can buy ‘rooster sauce’ here, but never have done. Call me a locovore! Unfortunately, I am out of Panich and post-hospitalisation mobility issues prevent me from restocking just at the moment.

 

Some brands that I have resorted to include:

 

Airborne. This is the one I used the in the Chna Deliveries topic. Note the bottle design and the Vietnamese! Not a word of Thai.

 

sriracha.thumb.jpg.cbfe8d80c43b9cfcd20d48e255edd9f3.jpg

 

RealThai brand iswidely distributed and although it is made in Thailand, it is to the US recipe.

 

134113392__20221006160736.thumb.jpg.b5c4241b7f3e4ede153a2ff43c078c23.jpg

 

and Fairy brand, again an American recipe clone.

 

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So there are alternatives to the rooster, but all following Chan's recipe, down to the same preservatives.

 

Let's hope the original Thai recipe becomes more widely available - it is a whole other experience.

 

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...your dancing child with his Chinese suit.

 

A terrible thing is ignorance, the source of endless human woes, spreading a mist over facts, obscuring truth, and casting a gloom upon the individual life. - Lucian of Samosata (born 120, died after 180 CE)

 

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Interesting.  Can you get the Shark brand where you are?  It's made in Thailand and is the closest that I've found to what was served to me when traveling there.   Definitely very different from the Rooster sauce, which is ubiquitous here, but as you say, nothign like real Sriracha.

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8 minutes ago, KennethT said:

Interesting.  Can you get the Shark brand where you are?  It's made in Thailand and is the closest that I've found to what was served to me when traveling there.   Definitely very different from the Rooster sauce, which is ubiquitous here, but as you say, nothign like real Sriracha.

 

I've  seen it but never tried it. I'll look out for it .

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...your dancing child with his Chinese suit.

 

A terrible thing is ignorance, the source of endless human woes, spreading a mist over facts, obscuring truth, and casting a gloom upon the individual life. - Lucian of Samosata (born 120, died after 180 CE)

 

The Kitchen Scale Manifesto

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I use both medium and strong Shark brand.    It's a good sauce, but not sure how it compares with Chakkapak's.    I find it rather "sweet", a cousin of sweet chili sauce.   

We also use "Rooster" which I realize is "wrong" but is our ubiquitous table sauce here.

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eGullet member #80.

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1 hour ago, KennethT said:

Interesting.  Can you get the Shark brand where you are?  It's made in Thailand and is the closest that I've found to what was served to me when traveling there. 

 

This is the one I use.

Mitch Weinstein aka "weinoo"

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  • 2 months later...
9 hours ago, Margaret Pilgrim said:

I've gone through a litre each of Shark medium and "he-man".    They are quite alright but both sweet to my taste.    More like sweet chili sauces.   

I'm still looking for Panich.  

 

Is this the stuff?

 

(eG-friendly Amazon.com link)

 

Cooking is cool.  And kitchen gear is even cooler.  -- Chad Ward

Whatever you crave, there's a dumpling for you. -- Hsiao-Ching Chou

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  • 3 weeks later...

We fell in love with Thai-style sriracha at breakfast in Bangkok — it's often served with the sublime Thai puffy omelets. Since then it's become our go-to condiment for scrambled eggs and the like.

 

We have tried a few Thai brands and find we have a very strong preference for Sriraja Panich. When there was an import problem a couple of years ago and we couldn't get it, we were very sad.

 

We can find 20oz glass bottles of SP locally for ~$5 — it's available on Amazon but the pricing is absolutely unhinged. (Shark is definitely easier to find, though.)

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