Sauce Recipes

Two Cold Sauces For Summer Fare

One day, late in the course at school, the master chef gave out assignments
to prep for a large dinner.  Most tasks were assigned to groups of four, others to one or two.  Some tasks were reserved for chef’s lead—often sauces. On this occasion, Chef Pascal said, “Chic, make the sauce.”  Wow, I’d arrived!  Or, maybe Pascal simply didn’t have the time and tossed the job to whomever.  I favored the first interpretation.  After all, I love sauces and he knew it.

An entrée without a complimentary sauce is incomplete.  Trouble is, sauces take time to make.  Worse still, they tend to be hard to get just right.  Cold sauces are easier on both counts.

Presented here are two cold sauces:  1. Rémoulade Sauce, a mayonnaise-based sauce for fish.  I make this sauce frequently.  It is a classic and for good reason: it’s good and works very well with fish.  2. Chipotle Crème Fraîche, a Latin American inspired sour cream-based sauce for poultry.  It  was recently updated in the Washington Post food section as a sauce for fish. Not.  This sauce is very close to the cream-based hot sauce served at our favorite Salvadoran spit roast chicken take-out joint.


See Abbreviations, if needed

·   1C          mayonnaise

·   1t            Dijon mustard

·   1-2         cornichons (gherkins) pickles, finely diced

·   2t           diced capers

·   1t            minced fresh parsley

·   1t            minced fresh tarragon

·   1             squirt anchovy paste

·    4 grinds  fresh pepper

·  ½         lemon, juiced (see note)

1.  Mix all together, cover and refrigerate

2.  Serve cold with fish, crab cakes and crab cake sandwiches

Note:  Go easy on the lemon juice.  Taste as you add.


See Abbreviations, if needed

·   14 oz      crème fraîche (see notes)

·   2            chipotle chili peppers in adobo sauce, deseeded and deveined (see notes)

·   ¼ C       diced shallots or spring onions

·   2            garlic cloves, finely diced or pureed

·   1t           sugar

·   2t           seasoned rice vinegar

·   1 ½        limes, juiced

1.  Puree all ingredients with a stick blender or in a food processor

2.  Strain, if a more finished sauce is desired

3.  Serve cold with grilled or roasted poultry

Notes:  To make crème fraîche, add 2T buttermilk to 1C whipping cream and let stand until thick or about 24 hours, or go buy the stuff ($$), or use  Mexican sour cream, or American sour cream (poorest choice).

“Chipotle in Adobo Sauce” comes in a can and is widely available in Hispanic

Markets.  I buy mine from Chile Today-Hot Tamale (

Wear rubber gloves while working with these chilies.

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