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Nuoc Mam / fish sauce

 
Posts: 22
Location: Tidewater Virginia
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"Fish Handling, Preservation and Processing in the Tropics: Part 2 Fish Handling, Preservation and Processing in the Tropics: Part 2"
This report addresses a few of the key elements of wet-fish preservation in the tropics, and includes helpful images like the ones I've copied here. I want to make fish sauce once things warm up a bit and was glad I found this!

 
gardener
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Rusty,
This is a really interesting diagram. Have you actually tried to use fish sauce using this diagram? I am interested in fish sauce as a culinary ingredient, but also for its medicinal benefits. I also like the protein preservation aspect of it. It could combine with aquaculture to help provide protein for a community.
Let us know how it works. I am interested.
Thanks,
John S
PDX OR
 
Rusty Shackleford
Posts: 22
Location: Tidewater Virginia
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I haven't yet, though I plan to make some garum once the weather stays warm here in VA ( an unusually cool April it's been...)
The vat depicted is no five gallon bucket. Images of nuoc mam....distilleries? ...fermenteries? ...factorys?... whatever they're called, show that these barrels are large - 100 gallons or more - and sit out in the open to be warmed by the sun. I wasn't able to find a smaller version. I do recall that a high school teacher who *ahem*... "toured" Vietnam... described a fish sauce being made from an open-air mesh bag of fish with the drippings being collected underneath, rather than a fermentation vessel. I haven't seen anything to corroborate this account though. I've got to pick up the fish the next time I visit the ethnic grocery... I'll post an update, but will be using info from Christianne Muuser's page: http://www.coquinaria.nl/english/recipes/garum.htm
 
steward
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Location: Wellington, New Zealand. Temperate, coastal, sandy, windy,
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Rusty, I'd be really interested to hear about any results if you go ahead with making fish sauce.
I love the stuff, and I'd be chuffed to douse things in my own nuoc mam
I'd especially like to know:
what species of fish
How many you use
how long you ferment it
what you ferment it in
how much does it pong? (I have sensitive neighbours...)
 
pollinator
Posts: 512
Location: Scioto county, Ohio, USA - Zone 6b
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I'm making garum fish sauce. Mackerel, salt, corriander, bay leaves, black pepper, and garlic.

Fish to salt ratio is 5.5:3. I expect to use the salt that stays solid as an umami salt for seasoning.
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pollinator
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Location: Virginia USDA 7a/b
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Ryan, super interested in your results. I have heard you can make it from freshwater fish as well, which we have in abundance.

I'm basing it on this recipe at 3:1 fish to salt. I am using Sea-90 for the salt.

My setup is a five gallon food grade bucket with a spigot installed on the bottom. I haven't gotten any fish yet this year, so I am thinking about the lid situation. I'm thinking Omega lid with a hardwood circle for the weights underneath. I'm going to use river rocks as weights. Unfortunately you don't get a result for a year, but it is worth trying at least once. Hopefully my wife doesn't see the bucket back there, some other "experiments" turned out a little pungent!
 
Ryan Hobbs
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Location: Scioto county, Ohio, USA - Zone 6b
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Tj Jefferson wrote:Ryan, super interested in your results. I have heard you can make it from freshwater fish as well, which we have in abundance.

I'm basing it on this recipe at 3:1 fish to salt. I am using Sea-90 for the salt.

My setup is a five gallon food grade bucket with a spigot installed on the bottom. I haven't gotten any fish yet this year, so I am thinking about the lid situation. I'm thinking Omega lid with a hardwood circle for the weights underneath. I'm going to use river rocks as weights. Unfortunately you don't get a result for a year, but it is worth trying at least once. Hopefully my wife doesn't see the bucket back there, some other "experiments" turned out a little pungent!



The fat in the fish is rising to the surface as a umm, pungent?, oil. I plan to skim it off and try using it for cooking. I heard fermented fish oil is a common cooking oil in the Yukon.
 
Tj Jefferson
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Ryan,

I am not too sure on that. Using mackerel may mean you have much more oil. I know sardines are used in some places to make fish sauce, but I am not sure what to do with excess oil. I do know that periodically it should be exposed to air, and a thick layer of oil may prevent oxygen from getting below the surface.
 
Ryan Hobbs
pollinator
Posts: 512
Location: Scioto county, Ohio, USA - Zone 6b
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I may just collect it for fishing bait. Mixing it with some wonderbread and making dough balls of the stuff is bound to attract some big catfish.
 
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