Category Archives: marinating

A Trio Of Sauces: Honey Mustard, Chimichurri, & Ginger-Soy

Top to bottom:  Honey Mustard, Chimmichuri, Sesame Soy

Top to bottom: Honey Mustard, Chimichurri, Sesame Soy

I’m a condiment fanatic.  Our refrigerator door is always crammed with bottles and jars of sauces, dips, and pickled items that can take ordinary foods to a whole new level.  One type of mustard or vinegar is never enough for me since each has its own flavor profile that makes all the difference in their respective dishes.  Because of my love of discovering new condiments, our nomadic lifestyle is a mixed blessing for me.  While our travels allow me to discover new sauces and condiments that enhance my culinary repertoire, having to pack up and move–and therefore empty our refrigerator– every couple of years is hard.  Leaving behind wonderful the wonderful sauces and such is just so upsetting.

But not all condiments need to be purchased; in fact the best ones are those that are whipped up by hand in my own kitchen.  Combine a little of this and a dash of that and you have magic in a bowl in minutes.  This trio of sauces highlights just how versatile condiments can be.  All three take just minutes to make and while they can be used immediately, taste better after they sit for an hour or so.  The ingredient ratios are just suggestions as you can add more or less of an ingredient depending upon your own preferences.  If you love garlic, add more. If you aren’t a fan of Dijon mustard, substitute a stone ground one instead.  Experiment with different combinations of fresh herbs.  Dip cooked meats or vegetables into the sauces a al fondue style to bring a variety of flavors to the table that will be sure to please all palates.  Chicken or pork is particularly good when dipped in the ginger soy and honey mustard sauces.  Or marinate a flank steak in the chimichurri sauce before grilling.  The combinations and possibilities are endless so let your imagination go wild………….


1/4 cup honey

1/4 cup Dijon mustard

2 tablespoons mayonnaise

1 teaspoon lemon juice

  • Combine all of the ingredients in a small bowl.
  • Allow to sit for 1/2 hour before using.

Yield 1/2 cup


1/2 cup flat leaf parsley

3 tablespoons cilantro

8 cloves garlic, crushed

1/3 cup olive oil

1/4 cup red wine vinegar

1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes

Salt & pepper to taste

  • Roughly chop the parsley and cilantro.
  • Place in shallow bowl and using a stick blender puree until combined.
  • Add the garlic and continue to puree until smooth.
  • Add the remaining ingredients puree until combined.
  • Allow the sauce to sit for at least 1/2 hour before using. Adjust the salt and pepper before serving.

Yield 1 cup


1/4 cup low sodium soy sauce

5 tablespoons rice vinegar

3 tablespoons warm water

2 tablespoons dark brown sugar

2 tablespoons freshly grated ginger

1 1/2 tablespoons white sugar

1 tablespoon sesame oil

1 tablespoon minced garlic

1 teaspoon Sriacha

1 teaspoon white sesame seeds

  • Combine all of the ingredients in a small bowl until well blended.
  • Allow to sit for at least one hour before serving.

The sauce can be stored covered in the refrigerator for up to one week. Return to room temperature before using.

Yields 3/4 cup


Bourbon & Brown Sugar Marinated Flank Steak


Photo courtesy of Fine Cooking

I discovered this recipe while standing in line at Home Depot of all places.  Glenn and I were in the midst of yet another home renovation project and as we stood in the check out line for the second time that weekend a new (to me anyway) magazine caught my eye.  I had never heard of Fine Cooking, but was immediately drawn to their colorful pictures, interesting recipes, and honest product reviews.  I ended up buying the magazine back in 2005 and have been renewing my subscription every year since then. We no longer own our renovated house but that very first recipe has been come a family favorite whether it is served as a quick go-to weeknight dinner or as a part of a more formal representational dinner.

Because the marinade is so good, I like to serve the steak with a starch that can soak up the juices.  Garlic mashed potatoes, a simple risotto, or gouda bread pudding are all good choices.  Regardless of which side dish you choose, the steak is fast and easy to make and is sure to please whomever is sitting at your table.


1/2 cup soy sauce

1/3 cup bourbon or other whiskey

1/3 cup packed dark brown sugar

1 tablespoon Dijon mustard

1 teaspoon hot sauce

1 1/2 to 2 pounds flank steak

  • Combine the first five ingredients in a large Ziploc bag.  Seal and shake to fully combine and dissolve the sugar.
  • Add the steak to the bag, seal, and massage to cover the steak with the marinade.
  • Refrigerate for at least 1 hour.
  • Prepare a medium-hot grill.*  Remove the steak from the marinade and shake off the excess.  Grill the steak for 3 to 4 minutes per side or until desired doneness.
  • Let rest for 5 minutes then slice on the diagonal. 
  • Pour the marinade into a small saucepan and bring to a boil.  Cook until syrupy and serve over the sliced steak.

* You can also broil the steak in the oven for 3-4 minutes per side.

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