Francis Lam’s Ginger Scallion Sauce

Quentin Nardi

Francis originally published this recipe in a riotous post for Salon. Be sure to check it out as his instructions manage to be both thorough and hilarious, which is no easy feat.

Use this sauce anywhere you need firepower, literally. As Francis points out in the video below, this sauce is traditionally used to accompany poached chicken -- one of the quietest and perhaps blandest bites around. This sauce will bring life to anything it touches: Bring on the eggs, smear it on sandwiches, toss it with noodles and serve it atop any kind of protein, from tofu and pork to fish.

Cook to Cook: Be sure to use a large bowl -- bigger than you would think -- because you will be adding hot oil to the scallions and ginger, which will bubble up like lava.

  • 1 ounce ginger, about a 3-inch chunk, peeled and cut into 1/2-inch chunks
  • 1 bunch whole scallions, cut into 1-inch lengths
  • 1 teaspoon sea salt, plus more to taste
  • 1/2 cup peanut oil

1. Place the ginger in the bowl of a food processor and process until the ginger is finely minced but not mushy. Scrape it into a large, tall, heatproof bowl (see Cook to Cook above).

2. Add the scallions to the processor and mince until they are the same size as the ginger. Scrape them into the bowl with the ginger.

3. As Francis says, “Salt the ginger and scallions like they called your mother a bad name and stir it well.” It should taste a little too salty.

4. Heat the oil in a pan until it begins to smoke, then pour it into the large bowl with the ginger and scallions. Stir lightly. Let cool to room temperature and serve. Keeps 2-3 weeks covered and refrigerated.

Prep time: 
Makes 1 cup

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