I’ve always fancied Thai flavors, though I’d yet to go to a Thai restaurant until today. One of the table condiments was this darkish-transparent liquid, the consistency of <American> soy sauce, not oily, with a few red pepper flakes floating in it.
I tried it plain <always gotta try everything!> and…yum. Strongly salty, with definite overtones of both sour and the occasional bitter taste as well. I’ve a savory tooth rather than a sweet one, so I just fell in love with it. Didn’t taste fishy, didn’t smell fishy…
When I asked the waiter what it was, he said it was just fish oil with some powdered pepper in it <I tasted no heat at all, despite the flakes>. When I asked if he meant nom pluc, he said no, just fish oil.
Been looking since I got home and I can’t find anything resembling ‘fish oil’ for sale anywhere, nor any recipes.
Lots of ‘fish sauce’ though
Since there are dozens of kinds of ‘fish sauce’, is it possible that’s really what he meant and I just used the wrong words in asking him? 'cause I really like this stuff, but if there is indeed a difference, then I need to look harder for ‘fish oil’.
Thanks in advance!!
p.s. I was not impressed with Pad Thai, unfortunately. I’d built up in my mind that pad thai was more lemongrass and chilies, less tamarind and sweet flavor <mine tasted very much like sweet and sour sauce, not nearly as light or sharply ‘bright’ tasting as I was hoping for> I shall have to invent a new version of that, I think.