Today on a rare break from both mes enfants (oh gosh it was grocery shopping, but it was so much fun), I had a chance to wander and peruse the aisles of the supermarkets and therefore gather all the info that was remaining to accompany today's recipe suggestions. About three months ago I was in costco. The woman next to me was eyeing a 5,000 litre bottle of honey soy marinade. She was "oohing and aahing" and quite excited about it. She turned to me and said "how awesome is this?". I looked at her as I picked up some soy sauce and said "well, you could make your own, it's just honey soy and garlic." Her reply "oh yeah but this one has all these extra flavours and colours, so it's going to taste even more amazing than just honey and soy sauce." I walked away.
I couldn't photograph the bottle that day without looking like I was a weirdo, so I left the photography until today. Now, I understand why these marinades and sauces are popular, they are a quick solution. You can just throw your chicken in them and not worry. It will have a honey soy flavour, but what about the other "goodies"?
Let's have a look at some of the ones I found today:
LET'S TALK ABOUT THIS SERIOUSLY:
We are talking honey, soy marinade/sauce/stir fry sauce.
Key ingredients should be: HONEY, SOY and Garlic...right?
It appears all is not so. Three of these list Water as their first ingredient. What does that say to you? Well, it means that the largest percentage of anything in the sauce is: water. One of them actually lists sugar as the first ingredient, meaning there is more sugar than anything else in the sauce.
Let's talk about the other ingredients.
[table id=1 /]
The following information is from the additive alert app:
- Additive 270 is not recommended for babies as they may be unable to metabolise it.
- Additive 1422 is otherwise known as acetylated distarch adipate (sounds natural, not!) and animal tests showed slowed growth rates and renal lesions.
- 631 : (Disodium 5-inosinate)May trigger gout symptoms, varied reactions reported. Prohibited in foods for infants and young children. Not recommended for asthmatics.
- 627 : (Disodium 5-guanylate) Asthmatics and aspirin sensitive people should avoid, linked to hyperactivity, gout sufferers avoid. Prohibited in foods for infants and young children
- 150c : (Caramel iii ( Ammonia Caramel ))
Linked to gastro intestinal problems, hypersensitivity, safety suspect. 150(i) seems safest.
- 202 : (Potassium sorbate)
Possible liver damage, behavioural problems. Linked to asthma. Avoid if kidney or heart problems.
So what on earth are we putting this stuff in a honey soy marinade for? Because, a honey soy marinade is something you should make up on the spot. Not something that is shelf stable.
So, next time you're reaching for one of these, just think about this recipe below which can be used to really quickly add a honey soy flavour to your meat. If you absolutely have to buy a jar of it, the Masterfoods would be my choice. I use Kikkoman soy sauce as it is nasty free- it contains water, soybeans, wheat and salt.
Honey soy marinade
- 1 cup soy sauce or tamari for gluten free option
- ½ cup honey
- 2 cloves garlic crushed
- optional- ginger ½ tsp star anise crushed, ½ tsp, ground cloves ½ tsp
- Whisk the ingredients together.
- Use to marinate meat, fish etc.
- To thicken use 1 tbsp cornflour to ¼ cup water mixed together and added to the sauce.
If you want a slow cooker version, you can check out this post I wrote for Organised Chaos: Slow cooked honey soy chicken wings.