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This is an awesome sauce that can be served over scallops or shrimp and linguine. We just used it at a big function at the zoo. We did 500 servings of scallops. We sautéed them there and added a little sauce. It was just excellent.

The recipe came from our original chef, José. He, my partner, and I were all instrumental in designing the menu. José was with us for the first two or three years, and then he decided he wanted to go off and do his own restaurant.

There are no tricks to making this recipe, and the ingredients are easily found in any market, except for the Yang Jiang preserved beans and the black vinegar, which can be purchased at Asian markets.

If you serve the sauce with scallops or shrimp -- which are what I prefer -- I would recommend

Presidio Pinot Noir or Frei Brothers Cabernet Sauvignon.

HOW TO DO IT

Rinse the beans in water. Soak them in hot water for 10 minutes. Drain the water. Sauté the shallots, garlic, and ginger in olive oil, until just soft. Add all the remaining ingredients, except the sugar and cornstarch, and simmer for 90 minutes. Add the sugar and mix till dissolved. Then add cornstarch by pinches, stirring vigorously to thicken sauce to desired consistency. Serve over seafood or seafood with pasta.

This recipe makes enough sauce for four to six servings.

INGREDIENTS

1/4 cup Yang Jiang preserved beans

2 cups water

2 tablespoons olive oil

1 tablespoon shallots, chopped

1 tablespoon fresh garlic, crushed

1 tablespoon fresh ginger, peeled and grated

1 teaspoon sherry

1 1/2 teaspoons balsamic vinegar

1 1/2 teaspoons red wine vinegar

2 tablespoons Chinese black vinegar

1 1/2 teaspoons Worcestershire sauce

1/2 cup oyster sauce

1/2 cup sugar

1 1/2 tablespoons cornstarch (or more) to thicken sauce

By David Witt, Owner, Fifth and Hawthorn, Banker’s Hill

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