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Soy sauce + butter = yum!

Chowpatty May 9, 2008 12:39 PM

Obviously the chefs at Japanese and fusion restaurants have always known this, but I've just started cooking with the soy/butter combination more at home and it is so delicious. I started by adding some soy sauce to melted butter for popcorn, which is amazing. Of course it is good on fish, and last night I made some soba noodles and didn't have anything prepared to put on them. So I quickly sauteed some chopped garlic in butter, added lemon juice, soy sauce and sesame oil -- wonderful and so easy. Today I sprinkled seaweed/sesame sprinkle on the leftovers with shrimp for lunch.
I'm sure that's how a local restaurant makes their "tofu steak" taste so good -- they just drench the tofu in soy and butter. Not the healthiest, but it works like a charm when you need a quick hit of rich flavor.

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  1. dockhl RE: Chowpatty May 9, 2008 01:07 PM

    soy, butter and lemon is my go-to grilled swordfish marinade.

    1 Reply
    1. re: dockhl
      food_eater79 RE: dockhl May 9, 2008 01:49 PM

      Great to saute in with salmon fillets too.

    2. Sam Fujisaka RE: Chowpatty May 9, 2008 01:09 PM

      Sautee thin slices of beef in soy sauce and butter!!

      2 Replies
      1. re: Sam Fujisaka
        Ruth Lafler RE: Sam Fujisaka May 9, 2008 03:04 PM

        Or toss those thin beef slices with melted butter and soy sauce and eat them raw, like carpaccio. I've been eating plain rice with soy sauce and butter for as long as I can remember -- it really is a delicious combination.

        1. re: Ruth Lafler
          Sam Fujisaka RE: Ruth Lafler May 9, 2008 04:43 PM

          Funny, I'm going to make carpaccio for a French friend next week. I'll prepare a bit with melted butter and soy sauce to give it a try.

      2. m
        mmalmad RE: Chowpatty May 9, 2008 01:29 PM

        I like soy & butter on pasta, with a bit of sesame oil...balck bepper

        15 Replies
        1. re: mmalmad
          Miss Needle RE: mmalmad May 9, 2008 02:27 PM

          One of my old roommates used to do that -- sans sesame oil and black pepper.

          1. re: Miss Needle
            dreamsicle RE: Miss Needle May 9, 2008 05:12 PM

            I sometimes use that when I make Japanese-style pasta too (also without the sesame oil), topped with furikake, bonito flakes, and lots of black pepper. When you add mixed mushrooms like shitake and shimeji to the pasta, they soak up the sauce and become awfully succulent and tasty!

            1. re: dreamsicle
              rumgum RE: dreamsicle May 10, 2008 08:06 AM

              That sounds yummy. What kind of pasta do you use?

              1. re: rumgum
                dreamsicle RE: rumgum May 10, 2008 11:34 AM

                Usually I use spaghetti or linguine but prefer the latter ... just personal taste, plus it seems to "sop up" the sauce better. And the dish I make is slightly soupier (i.e. with more sauce) than the usual pasta dish. Hope you'll like it. :)

              2. re: dreamsicle
                Miss Needle RE: dreamsicle May 10, 2008 02:12 PM

                That does sound quite delicious! I should try it soon, especially since I have all the ingredients at home.

              3. re: Miss Needle
                Miss Needle RE: Miss Needle May 10, 2008 03:05 PM

                Does anybody know if the soy sauce and butter combo is common in the Ashkenazi Orthodox Jewish circle? Because after bitsubeats post about the combo on rice, I'm thinking of another Orthodox Jewish roomate who liked to eat her rice with butter and soy sauce.

                1. re: Miss Needle
                  Ruth Lafler RE: Miss Needle May 10, 2008 05:10 PM

                  Three of us mentioned that combo (without other stuff): me, kpaumer and bitsubeats. I can't speak for anyone else, but even though I'm half (non-Orthodox) Ashkenazi I don't know anyone in my family who eats rice that way so no, I don't think it's an cultural thing.

                  1. re: Ruth Lafler
                    Miss Needle RE: Ruth Lafler May 10, 2008 05:30 PM

                    I guess I wasn't clear. I wasn't really talking about the rice but the butter soy sauce combo because one of my Orthodox Jewish roomates used to eat her pasta with butter and soy sauce and another Orthodox Jewish roomate ate her rice with butter and soy sauce. Sometimes you've got certain cultures adopting items that may seem a bit odd on the surface -- eg. Koreans and Spam.

                    1. re: Miss Needle
                      Ruth Lafler RE: Miss Needle May 10, 2008 05:51 PM

                      I think it's probably just a coincidence. But if you want me to speculate wildly ... if they were Orthodox, I assume they kept kosher. Under kosher laws, you can't mix butter with meat, so perhaps the soy sauce is a kosher source of umami. Butter and soy sauce together provide a combination of flavor components similar to bacon: fat, salt, umami and what I guess could be called "cure."

                      1. re: Ruth Lafler
                        Miss Needle RE: Ruth Lafler May 10, 2008 06:09 PM

                        Interesting theory. Makes sense. Yeah, it was probably a coincidence. But you've got a great imagination. : )

                      2. re: Miss Needle
                        hotsauce28 RE: Miss Needle May 11, 2008 07:42 AM

                        i have a lot of Ashkenazi friends and family. I've never seen them do the soy/butter combo. I thought that was a Korean thing.
                        Funny that you mention the Koreans and spam. I've always wondered how they picked up spam and just learned that it was from the American soldiers during the korean war.

                    2. re: Miss Needle
                      chicgail RE: Miss Needle May 16, 2008 12:38 PM

                      Maybe bitsubeats IS your roommate -- posting incognito on this board!

                      1. re: chicgail
                        Miss Needle RE: chicgail May 16, 2008 01:18 PM

                        Ha ha. Well, I know bitsu is half Korean and I don't think my roommates had any Korean blood in them. But that brings an interesting point. I wonder how many posters discovered somebody they already knew on these boards? I know my family once hired a contractor to find out that we were distant relatives. It can be a small world.

                        1. re: Miss Needle
                          Ruth Lafler RE: Miss Needle May 16, 2008 01:29 PM

                          susancinsf and janetofreno started posting on the board independently and it took them a while to realize the other was their twin sister!

                          1. re: Ruth Lafler
                            Miss Needle RE: Ruth Lafler May 16, 2008 01:49 PM

                            Oh, how funny! My sister posted a few posts on this site independently as well and I ran into a couple of her posts too. But I immediately recognized her pseudonym. Too bad she doesn't post anymore.

                2. f
                  fourunder RE: Chowpatty May 9, 2008 01:41 PM

                  According to Rocco DiSpirito's newest Cookbook "Real Life Recipes", you can save slightly burnt food with heated ketchup and butter.


                  1. fmed RE: Chowpatty May 9, 2008 02:31 PM

                    I make this Pan-seared Salmon with Soy-Butter regularly. Fast and delicious.

                    1. Anonimo RE: Chowpatty May 9, 2008 02:45 PM

                      I often enjoy a dish of steamed rice with a fried egg on top, cooked in butter, sprinkling some Kikkoman over all. It's what's for breakfast.

                      3 Replies
                      1. re: Anonimo
                        hotsauce28 RE: Anonimo May 9, 2008 02:57 PM

                        I love this dish! It was my comfort food as a kid and i still enjoy it today. I put a drop of sesame oil in mine.

                        1. re: hotsauce28
                          joonjoon RE: hotsauce28 May 14, 2010 03:24 PM

                          Same here! I go Soy, Butter, Sesame, Egg (I don't cook the egg - just mash raw egg into hot hot rice), and a slice of American. So yum.

                          1. re: joonjoon
                            c oliver RE: joonjoon May 15, 2010 03:52 PM

                            This sounds fantastic - any time of day. I have a newly acquired addiction to toasted black sesame seeds. I'll be adding those.

                      2. kpaumer RE: Chowpatty May 9, 2008 04:57 PM

                        On hot white jasmine rice!!

                        1. m
                          moki RE: Chowpatty May 10, 2008 04:47 AM

                          Another twist is to add garlic to the mix. Garlic + soy sauce + butter sauteed thinly sliced potatoes make for a quick and hearty side to rice.

                          1 Reply
                          1. re: moki
                            Analisas mom RE: moki May 10, 2008 05:36 AM

                            Another thing to do is do soy with butter and add brown sugar. it is a great marinade for any type of meat or seafood. I use this on Sea Bass then grill it frantastic.

                          2. a
                            aburitoro RE: Chowpatty May 10, 2008 02:50 PM

                            Funny. I am eating a snack of a few yaki mochi, which were dipped in soy sauce, wrapped in seaweed, and slathered in butter.

                            Butter and soy sauce are also good on a pan-fried steak.

                            1. bitsubeats RE: Chowpatty May 10, 2008 02:54 PM

                              As a kid I used to LOVE rice with butter and soy sauce. I tried that combination recently and it almost made me puke ): Im sure it tastes a hell of a lot better on something like meat, fish, or tofu.

                              1. ipsedixit RE: Chowpatty May 10, 2008 09:53 PM

                                I'm actually not a fan of the soy sauce and butter combo.

                                Dunno why, but it just tastes off for some reason.

                                If I want to perk up a soy sauce concoction I'll generally add some sesame oil. But never butter.

                                2 Replies
                                1. re: ipsedixit
                                  hannaone RE: ipsedixit May 16, 2008 11:31 AM

                                  I agree with you.
                                  The butter/soy sauce doesn't work for me. Roasted dark sesame oil with some minced garlic and green onion works much better.

                                  1. re: hannaone
                                    ipsedixit RE: hannaone May 16, 2008 12:05 PM

                                    Indeed. That sauce you described works with just about anything, esp. steamed eggplants, tofu, dumplings, and even tempura.

                                2. Sarah RE: Chowpatty May 10, 2008 09:57 PM

                                  Hmmm - is that what they slather on (flattened) rice cakes before grilling them? Delicious!

                                  1. Raedia RE: Chowpatty May 15, 2008 03:24 PM

                                    After reading this thread I sauteed some fiddleheads and baked tofu in soy & butter with some garlic and served it all over jasmine rice - amazing! Glad I have an adventurous husband who doesn't mind tofu 'n' ferns for dinner. ;) Great suggestion!

                                    1. w
                                      winechik RE: Chowpatty May 15, 2008 04:26 PM

                                      One of my old roomates used to use a soy-butter basting sauce on her Thanksgiving turkey. It turns it a beautiful brown color and tastes great, probably not great for your sodium levels, but it's a holiday right? Also, gravy made from the drippings has that great color as well, but is on the salty side.

                                      1 Reply
                                      1. re: winechik
                                        wanderlust21 RE: winechik May 16, 2008 05:00 PM

                                        My family does this with our Thanksgiving Turkey plus some sesame oil and stuffs the turkey with sticky rice and heads of garlic. It's delicious. The butter soy sauce rice combo was very common in my college days. Soy sauce with any fat, like turkey drippings or duck fat over rice works well.

                                      2. Chowpatty RE: Chowpatty May 15, 2008 05:01 PM

                                        As an update, I recently had one of the best dishes I've had in ages at Lamill Coffee in L.A. It was arctic char (very similar to mild salmon) cooked with a crispy skin. The fish was resting on a sauce of tiny brown mushrooms with diced tomatoes in the most amazing sauce. After moaning with pleasure for a while, I checked the menu and realized the sauce was simply described as "soy-butter." I'm going to have to re-create that one, even if I can't find those little mushrooms.

                                        1 Reply
                                        1. re: Chowpatty
                                          JeffW RE: Chowpatty May 15, 2008 05:34 PM

                                          I found your original post pretty interesting. Tomorrow night I am going to be using my outdoor smoker for Salmon steaks and fillet's. I will smoke over apple or cherry wood, and typically I would take a mixture of Dijon and maple syrup to glaze, before smoking. Now I'm thinking of butter and soy! Thnx for your post.

                                        2. voyageurdemonde RE: Chowpatty May 16, 2008 06:36 AM

                                          I've been doing this for years as well. I add soy, butter, garlic powder and black pepper to a bowl of noodles and shrimp or chicken. The popcorn idea sound yummy!

                                          I have also discovered the wonders of Soy + Cream. Te Kei’s Chinese Asian Kitchen in Tulsa serves their potstickers with the soy cream. Here in Orlando, my favorite dish at Wolfgang Puck Cafe is the Macadamia Nut Crusted Breast of Chicken with Papaya marmalade and garlic mashed potatoes with sho yu cream sauce. The soy cream makes the perfect gravy for the potatoes and chicken.

                                          1. b
                                            BBettinaB RE: Chowpatty May 16, 2008 07:27 AM

                                            I do this too! But with a slight twist. For those who don't or can't eat dairy, or even if you just want to cut down on cholesterol, I'd like to suggest an alternate to the butter. It's what I use, and it's basically the same thing. Now I know it's hard to equate butter, but this is darn close.

                                            Earth Balance (made by same people as Smart Balance but without the dairy ingredients and even having an organic version) makes two delicious non-dairy and non-hydrogenated (thus non-trans-fat) margarines. One is called Earth Balance and the other is Soy Garden.

                                            These are delicious in their own right and great for things like this recipe. I "discovered" this one night with some brown rice - I wanted the richness of butter but had already put some tamari on my rice. So I went for it! It was fantastic! Sometimes I add a drop of toasted sesame oil and sprinkle some seeds on top, and sometimes I don't.



                                            1. c
                                              corgi RE: Chowpatty May 16, 2008 07:44 AM

                                              I pan-sear salmon, then I build a pan-sauce with soy, mirin, sake, and sushi rice vinegar. Then I mount the sauce with a couple of tablespoons of cold butter, toss in some chopped scallion and sauce around the salmon so as not to de-crisp the skin. This is a standard Chez Corgi.

                                              1. Miss Clare RE: Chowpatty May 16, 2008 09:02 AM

                                                One of my favorite vegetable side dishes is broccoli roasted with red peppers and garlic cloves. I dress the veggies with cubes of cold butter, some liberal splashes of soy sauce, and red pepper flakes, and roast the whole mess in a hot oven, turning everything a few times. Fantastic on its own or served with soft, cheesy polenta and some roasted Italian sausages.

                                                1. c
                                                  clwseattle RE: Chowpatty May 16, 2008 10:44 AM

                                                  2 Tbls BUTTER melted
                                                  1 Tbls SOY
                                                  1 Tsp BALSAMIC VINEGAR

                                                  I use over seasoned baked asparagus... oh YUM!... even leftover & cold is yum.

                                                  1 Reply
                                                  1. re: clwseattle
                                                    sparkareno RE: clwseattle Apr 22, 2010 04:18 PM

                                                    I do this but I brown the butter first--like you said I put it over grilled asparagus & then sprinkle with fancy-pants salt. My mouth is watering just thinking about it.

                                                  2. l
                                                    lcritton RE: Chowpatty May 16, 2008 12:21 PM

                                                    I use melted butter and soy sauce to use as a dip for artichokes.

                                                    1. e
                                                      Ellen RE: Chowpatty May 16, 2008 04:47 PM

                                                      Thick slice some vidalias, dot with butter, sprinkle with soy sauce, wrap in a shallow pan of doubled tin foil and throw on the grill for 15 minutes. Open once, stir, reclose and grill for another 20 minutes. Divine.

                                                      1. coastie RE: Chowpatty May 16, 2008 05:12 PM

                                                        soy , butter, and honey is a very popular grilled salmon baste here - yummy.
                                                        Im partial to aloha shoyu in this application

                                                        1. p
                                                          phan1 RE: Chowpatty May 19, 2008 10:14 AM

                                                          As a kid my favorite dish was rice with Maggi soy sauce and butter. :) I think I'll try a hollandaise sometime with soy sauce instead of vinegar. That sounds like a combination that makes sense!

                                                          1. Katie Nell RE: Chowpatty May 19, 2008 01:14 PM

                                                            We love this recipe from Wolfgang Puck for Honey-marinated Beef Satay with Butter/ Soy Dipping sauce: http://www.foodnetwork.com/food/recip... The sauce is really addictive!

                                                            2 Replies
                                                            1. re: Katie Nell
                                                              dockhl RE: Katie Nell May 19, 2008 04:11 PM

                                                              oh my, I can imagine that over a bowl of rice.....
                                                              I can't imagine you ever have any left over but, on the off chance, does it keep well?

                                                              1. re: dockhl
                                                                Katie Nell RE: dockhl May 19, 2008 08:51 PM

                                                                Well, as you can imagine, the butter solidifies on top of the soy sauce, but I just heat it back up and it comes together just fine.

                                                            2. g
                                                              gl827 RE: Chowpatty May 19, 2008 03:55 PM

                                                              omg. when i was younger my mom used to give us rice mixed with butter and jang jo rim which is basically a korean side dish (banchan) of beef braised in soy sauce, garlic and ginger. so she'd spoon some of the soy sauce on the rice, cut up some of the meat and heat it all up with a pat of butter. soooo good.

                                                              i also love rice, a sunny side up egg and soy sauce. cheap and filling.

                                                              soy sauce and butter is also yummy when added to mashed sweet potatoes.

                                                              1. chef chicklet RE: Chowpatty May 19, 2008 10:04 PM

                                                                Friday evening, I pounded chicken breasts thin, then grilled them on the bbq with only salt and pepper/ Earlier that day, I had mixed butter and soy and put it back in the fridge.When the chicken breasts were cooking using a melon baller, we added the round balls of soy butter to the tops.. Gosh it was just about the best chicken breast, so moist! Reminded me of the chicken at the Japanese restaurant using Tappan (think that's the word) grill. Was delicious.

                                                                1. Ruth Lafler RE: Chowpatty Apr 22, 2010 03:03 PM

                                                                  I'm going to resurrect this thread by reporting that I drizzled a mixture of soy sauce and butter on my popcorn the other night and it was delicious.

                                                                  1. BamiaWruz RE: Chowpatty Apr 23, 2010 01:48 AM

                                                                    Going to try this tomorrow!!! Never thought to use the combination.

                                                                    Wonder if it would be good on vegetable sides.

                                                                    1 Reply
                                                                    1. re: BamiaWruz
                                                                      BobB RE: BamiaWruz Apr 23, 2010 01:28 PM

                                                                      I've used this combo for sauteed mushrooms (along with lots of fresh-ground black pepper) for many years. Makes a quick & easy steak topping.

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