As a die-hard DIYer, my pantry is filled with little things I make myself: ketchup, mayonnaise, barbecue sauce, flour mixes. And my freezer is always home to a few homemade items that are easy to pull out in a pinch for last minute meals: pizza crusts, pie crusts, biscuits and more. These pantry items and kitchen staples not only help me to maintain my grocery budget while still purchasing otherwise expensive foods like grass-fed meats, raw dairy and organic produce.
The DIY Pantry
So when The DIY Pantry by Kresha Faber landed in my mailbox, I was thrilled. Not only did she include recipes for many things I happen to make myself (like sour cream, yogurt, and breadcrumbs), but also many pantry items that I hadn’t yet tried my hand at making. Among them, this Worcestersauce which has quickly become a happy staple in my family’s kitchen.
A brilliant and useful book, The DIY Pantry includes 150 recipes for very simple, wholesome pantry favorites that come together in thirty minutes or less. Easy. And for families looking to clean up their diets or to avoid allergies, The DIY Pantry makes it not only practical to begin making your own pantry basics, but also easy and affordable.
I’ve long loved Kresha’s approach (she blogs at Nourishing Joy) to foods which, in many ways, mirrors my own: whole foods, prepared at home, with emphasis on wholesome fats, and back-to-basics cooking. Her approach in The DIY Pantry is one that makes cooking from scratch easy and attainable, and, most importantly, it provides readers an opportunity to not only come back to the table, but also to avoid tricky ingredients like refined sugars and vegetable oils, dyes and other additives that lurk in the bottles and boxes that line grocery store shelves.
While this Worcestershire Sauce recipe is certainly a favorite, she also includes recipes for dressings, chutneys, spice mixes, chocolate syrup and ice cream, as well as super simple baking mixes for yellow and chocolate cakes. There’s a lot in this book.
Homemade Worcestershire Sauce
Worcestershire Sauce offers a wonderful sweet-sour-salty flavor owing to its many ingredients that include traditionally fermented fish sauce and anchovies, spices and even fresh lime. Together they blend into a wonderful simple, lovely sauce that, in small quantities, adds a lovely depth of flavor to marinades, dips, salad dressings and other sauces.
One bottle lasts a long time, because you typically use so little in each recipe.
- ½ cup malt vinegar
- ½ cup apple cider vinegar
- ½ cup blackstrap molasses
- ¼ cup naturally fermented fish sauce (find it here)
- 2 tablespoons tamarind paste
- 1 tablespoon naturally fermented soy sauce
- 3 tablespoons onion juice, or 1 teaspoon dehydrated onion
- 1 teaspoon ground black pepper
- ½ teaspoon cinnamon
- ½ teaspoon ground cloves
- ¼ teaspoon cayenne pepper
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 2 shallots, finely minced
- 4 cloves garlic, finely minced
- 1 teaspoon freshly grated ginger
- 8 anchovies, minced
- Juice of 1 lime
- Whisk together the vinegars, molasses, fish sauce, tamarind paste, soy sauce, and onion juice. Set aside.
- Heat a small, dry saute pan over medium heat. Toast the spices until fragrant, about 1 minute. Pour into a small bowl and set aside.
- In a small saucepan, heat the oil over medium heat; then sauté the shallots until transparent and beginning to brown, 2–3 minutes. Add garlic, ginger, anchovies, and reserved spices and continue to saute just until fragrant, about 30 seconds.
- Pour in the vinegar mixture and scrape up any bits on the bottom of the pan. Bring to a full simmer; then remove from the heat and let cool completely.
- Strain through a fine-mesh strainer into a bowl and stir in the lime juice. Pour into a jar or bottle for long-term storage. Will keep in the refrigerator for 1–2 months.