The first thing that you miss when you leave a place is the food. One of the first things I made when I left the island was finadene. I have my own recipe. There seems to be a difference of opinion when it comes to the recipe.
Let’s break down this sauce. The primary ingredient is soy sauce. I’m a Kikkoman only kind of guy and when I buy soy sauce I buy the 5 gallon containers. Then after having the base flavor we add an acid element. After the acid element, we add a spicy item and to top it off we add some kind of flavoring (usually onions).
The recipes I see out there all contain: soy sauce and onion (green, white, red, other). The rest of the recipe requires a hot pepper of sorts. I’ve tasted ones with Jalapenos, Thai Red Peppers, Serranos, and Habaneros. They all seem to do the job and I’d leave it up to you to decide which one to use. Beware the habanero.
Where the recipe gets a variation is where some people use lemon juice, lime juice, or vinegar as the acid. What’s the right answer? I think whatever you have near you is the answer. I’ve experimented with the different acids (I even tried rice wine vinegar) and each set brings in a new sensation. By using lemon juice, you also add a sweetness factor to the sauce. If you only have vinegar, you might want to throw in a pinch of sugar.
You have the elements of a great sauce: sweet, sour, salty, and spicy.
Here’s my recipe:
1 cup soy sauce
Juice of a ripe lemon
2 stalks green onion
5 Thai red peppers
Add soy sauce and lemon juice in a bowl. Finely chop the onions and red peppers. Place onions and peppers in the bowl and wait. You really need to wait a while in order for the ingredients to become friends. Think of the last party you attended. It took a while for people to mingle.
Hint: You can marinade meats using this exact recipe. I usually add a cup or two of water to turn this into a marinade.