got finadene?


finadene (pronounced fin-ah-dén-ee) is a salty, spicy, soury condiment found on every fiesta table. the sauce not only provides an added 'kick' to whatever it is added to (rice, barbecued meats, grilled fish--anything, really), its acidity adds a freshness to items that can seem stodgy or greasy otherwise.

many households have a jar of finadene on the table anyway, but the basic sauce of 1 part soy sauce, 1 part vinegar, chopped white onion and fresh chilis is usually taken to a new level for fiesta time. the usual addition is fresh lemon, lime, dayap, or calamansi juice; also, green onions, thin slices of lemon, or halved cherry tomatoes are added for extra zing. i happen to use all of them (plus a little sugar to tone down the acid).

not only is it an excellent condiment, it is a good marinade for meats and fish for grilling, and i use it as a steaming liquid in a superquick fish dish that i have for dinner more nights than not (yeah, i'm lazy): in a microwaveable glass dish, lay down several small coins of cut fresh ginger; the ginger doesn't always add flavour to your dish (esp. if you leave the skin on), but it is important because it neutralises any fishy smells which frankly, are rank, and i can do without. place one fillet of fish of your choice (defrost if frozen) on top. drizzle fish with finadene slightly diluted by water, cover dish with clingfilm, zap on high for 2minutes, and bob's yer uncle, dinner is served.


Hi Santos! My sister visited me from Guam last month and made finadene for our dinner. She was looking for the vinegar she usually uses (that awful Heinz white distilled vinegar, which I don't buy), and only reluctantly tried the good white wine vinegar that I did have. Of course it made a huge difference in the flavor which she did admit. Moral of the story, which I don't need to tell you, quality ingredients make all the difference. I hope she went home and threw out the Heinz.

I like my finadene with lots of onions and cherry tomatoes.

hi fran! i agree, the white distilled stuff is pretty nasty. good for cleaning windows, though :) i use coconut-based vinegar from the philippines for most of our cooking. it's worlds better than heinz.

i saw jojo the other night, he was telling us how much he likes to play poker with you >:D

Oh that looks so yummy (I can see myself just drinking that by the teaspoonful). I know it's supposed to go on top of stuff, but it seriously looks good enough to drink.

Does it matter what kind of soy sauce I use? I've got several different kinds (tamari, the kikkoman stuff, and my personal favorite, the Datu Puti soy sauce of my youth). I ask only because they all taste so differently.

hi lorelei! i think it's a matter of preference. i know kikkoman is standard, but i know people who prefer using the datu puti. i use the low sodium kikkoman, but omg, have you ever tasted sushi/sashimi grade soy sauce? it's so smooth and sexy you could really eat it with a spoon!