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Get to Know Tamari and Shoyu

Savory tamari and slightly sweeter shoyu impart flavor to soups, dressings, marinades and meat, fish and vegetable dishes making these soy sauces delicious additions to your pantry.

Tamari and Honey-Glazed Scallops

Tamari and Honey-Glazed Scallops

Made from soybeans, salt, water and a fermentation starter, tamari is a form of soy sauce with little or no wheat that has been fermented for about six months. The result is a salty, savory thick sauce with a darker color and richer flavor than shoyu, the type of soy sauce you likely already know and use.

Tamari is a good example of “umami”, the Japanese term used to describe a deeply satisfying, savory flavor. It lends itself well to dipping, basting and grilling. Foods and recipes rich in umami such as Tamari and Honey-Glazed Scallops are mouthwatering and irresistible.

Shoyu, the Japanese word for “soy sauce”, is made in the same way as tamari, only with added wheat. This imparts a distinctly sweeter flavor. It’s best used as a table condiment or dipping sauce. It’s lighter and sweeter in flavor than tamari, with a rich aroma and caramel-like undertones.

Stir-Fried Beef with Asparagus

Stir-Fried Beef with Asparagus

Tamari is quite salty, so to make your recipes deliciously palatable, you may need to “halt the salt” when using it. Reduced-sodium varieties are available. Here are some fun ways to experiment with these two types of soy sauce:

Savory Greens Stir-Fry

Savory Greens Stir-Fry

Do you prefer tamari or shoyu? Let me know your favorite ways to use them. 

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