What Exactly Is Duck Sauce?

What Exactly Is Duck Sauce?

No actual ducks are used to make the duck sauce. So that begs the question of why it is called what it is, a sauce for Peking duck.

If you don’t have something planned for dinner, then you might go one of three ways. First, you could drop by your local Chinese restaurant and get your usual meal. That, or you could try something new. Your third option involves either calling the order in for pickup or ordering online for delivery. In any case, let’s say you start your meal with egg rolls, and it comes with duck sauce.

The Name Game

No actual ducks are used to make the duck sauce. So that begs the question of why it is called what it is, a sauce for Peking duck. If you know that this special roast duck dish is supposed to be served with plum sauce, then you would be correct. Upon its North American arrival, the traditional way to serve it go a Westernized spin for American diners. The sauce is supposed to be made with soybeans, but here in the United States, apricots were used as a substitute instead, but the original name still stuck. Thus, it’s easy to see that duck sauce as we call it is not an authentic element of true Chinese cuisine. Although sauces are still important when you sit down to a banquet or just a typical meal, the sauce will be served in bowls or are already spread on your food, making the plastic packets unnecessary.  

How Is It Made?

Duck sauce is made differently depending on where in America you go. Along the eastern seaboard, you’ll find that it’s similar to another sauce that you might be fond of – sweet and sour sauce. The one big difference is that it will be much sweeter and taste more like fruit. Up in New England, it looks much different. Here it is thick and brown with chunks in it. Out in California and other parts of the west coast, however, it’s almost unknown.

Why Is It Hard to Find?

Many of the food supply companies that produce duck sauce are in New York, but they haven’t had enough influence out west to bring the sauce there. That’s why if you go into Chinatown in San Francisco you will find other sauces offered than if you were to go into the Chinatown in New York City or Washington DC.

Get All Your Asian Groceries at Lotte Plaza Market

Lotte Plaza Market is your one-stop shop for all of your Korean and Asian grocery needs. With more than 10 locations in Maryland and Virginia, this growing market is always expanding and opening new markets to serve our customers better. Since we opened in 1976, our goal has always been to provide the best customer service and groceries to our customers. For answers to all of your questions, email us at LottePlaza.com.


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