Uses for Maggi Seasoning
- ReelMike84 Nov 1, 2009 05:11 PM
My girlfriend bought this huge bottle of Maggi Seasoning at Ranch 99 and we have no idea how to use it. She's familiar with it from growing up in a Chinese household, but I'm a total Maggi newbie. Any thoughts on ways we can make our way through this Costco sized bottle?
The only use my Maggi gets is to darken the broth for Onion Soup Gratinee, and the "jus" style sauce that I make for French Dip sandwiches.
Many find beef and barley soup and beef stew lacking if there's not a bit of Maggi (or the similar "Gravy Master") seasoning in 'em.
Hope that helps a little bit.
There's a restaurant located in Carlstadt, New Jersey called Steve's Sizzling Steaks that for years existed solely by serving Filet Mignon on a hot sizzling plate with french fries and a bad salad with a slice of rye bread. What was splashed on the hot plate to give it the sizzle...was Maggi Seasoning. If you wanted extra, it cost you an additional .75 cents. The restaurant has been around for decades and it is very popular....especially before an event at The Meadowland Sports Complex which is home to the Giants, Jets and Nets.
I bought Maggi after returning from Mexico to make my own Red Eye (Ojo Rojo, or the Michelada...but I use Clamato in place of tomato).
Maggi can also be used in a bloody mary or bloody caesar.
The wife sometimes grills ribs as her mother did: cut pork side ribs into individual pieces, sprinkle with montreal steak spice and soy, let marinate a couple of hours and grill. She tried with Maggi and now prefers the more complex flavors of it compared to soy.
Oh, in any recipe, use as much as you want, a drop or a wallop, depending only on your personal preference. I'm not sure about Costco, but you may find the mega bottle for cheap in east European stores as well. If you find yourself hooked, it might be a good idea to purchase a smaller bottle as well and use the jumbo for refills - slightly more convenient pulling that small one outta the cupboard.
It lends greater depth to meat marinades or sauces. As a German who grew up with those small bottles on practically any good ol' German restaurant table in the 70s (and despising the flavor -- liquid salt, anyone?), it was something I would never consider using for my own cooking.
A German resto around here used to pride itself on its homemade salad dressing that included Maggi. Ewww.
I was quite suprised to find out how popular the sauce is in China and Chinese cooking. In fact, I was taken aback when our Chinese friend proceeded to mix it in with some soy sauce, rice vinegar, sesame oil, etc., but had to agree that it added a certain je ne sais quoi.
You probably would've been better off just getting the small bottle, because the big one will last you quite a while. Never use more than just a few drops.
Here's a blog post from Andrea Nguyen for noodles with Maggi, garlic and butter:
Andrea's book, "Into the Vietnamese Kitchen", has another recipe for steak marinated with raw garlic and seared with Maggi sauce. It makes a worthy fifteen minute dinner served sliced thin over rice. Here's the recipe online:
Here's a blog post from Pat Tanumihardja, the author of the "Asian Grandmothers Cookbook", with a tricked-out recipe for garlic-butter noodles that includes scallions and oyster sauce:
Haven't tried Pat's recipe yet, but I'm sure some late winter night it will come in handy.
Maggi has a certain "much-ness" umami taste, so I prefer to serve a meat dish that has Maggi in it with very simple side like sauteed greens and plain rice to kind of decompress the taste buds. The noodles are more of a main event for a late, tired night when you want some cheap vegetarian umami full stop.
Chili, beef stew, sloppy joe's, bbq sauce, ponzu sauce, and marinades are all good candidates for Maggi.
I just picked up some Banh Mi sandwiches at the justifiably highly recommended Banh Mi My Tho. While there I saw cartons of Maggi seasoning. There were two kinds; the red cap (from Europe) and the yellow cap (from China). On impulse I bought a liter bottle of the Chinese version because unlike the European version it did not list MSG on the label (although I later found out "hydrolyzed wheat protein is the natural equivalent).
Never having used it before, I was making a salad when I read on the label that Maggi was good in salads. So I added some. It was delicious. But I probably added too much because I'm feeling the onset of "Chinese Restaurant Syndrome" associated with MSG which I haven't had for about 40 or 50 years.,
Use very sparingly. Literally a few drops (not the splashes I used) is probably about right.
I recognized the flavor as what makes Banh Mi sandwiches so tasty after using it. It may even be the secret of the "Umami Burger"--dunno.
Maggi is used pretty commonly in various styles of African cooking, too. It's added to Senegalese mafe' (meat and/or vegetables stewed in a peanut sauce), Congolese Dongo-Dongo (the ancestor of Southern gumbo, a soup-stew with lots of okra) and Ceebu Jen (rice and fish casserole).
It also works weirdly well if you add it instead of salt to very dark chocolate cake or brownies.
PS: All Maggi contains some MSG, even the kind without it on the ingredients label. (It's a natural by-product of the processing they use to make the hydrolized wheat and vegetable proteins that are the main ingredient so they don't have to list it). If you have an MSG sensitivity, you might want to be careful.
my mom once told me that the true way they make french diced beef (the french refers to the cut btw) in vietnam is with maggi. although restaurants here use black pepper sauce instead. if that helps any...
personally i've never bought it because it's sooo expensive compared to other sauces...
Makes the best gravy, and most other sauces can benefit from a few drops.
Very good on greens of all sorts, as well as pasta. Salad dressings, yes. Other veggies- corn, carrots, zucchini, butternut & acorn squash.
Great on melon of any sort.
I used to go to Steve's Sizzling Steaks out on Rt 17 when I lived in Jersey back in the 80s, and to this day I love Maggi and butter on a good steak. Heaven.
Instant umami for soups and stews; it only takes a drop or two.
One of my favorite quick & easy dips is sour cream with Maggi and Spike.
I, too, went on a Banh Mi kick, and also bought some Maggi seasoning which is used in most Vietnamese cooking and sandwiches. I loved the flavor, but made a horrifying discovery; it's almost all pure salt, even without added salt.
I started using it for a week, and gained a pound and a half. I then stopped using it and in the following week lost all the gain. It would seem to be retained water from the heavy sodium content.
Needless to say, the bulk of the huge bottle is now flavoring the Los Angeles sewage system. Too bad, because I love the flavor it imparts to Banh Mi and cooking in general.
I guess it is the Umami taste. After some research, the lowest-sodium additive source of that taste seems to be the Chinese lower sodium Kimlan Soy Sauce. Perhaps I'll try that. SanJ low sodium Tamari is also somewhat low, but significantly higher than Kimlan.
I should have noticed the giveaway on the Maggi label: a serving (high sodium) is a teaspoon, while most Soy sauces call a serving a tablespoon. And yes, I was using it in drops and dashes, not pouring it on.
I know tomato seeds are also supposed to be high in Umami, but that is a little impractical as a cooking additive.
And I believe very differently to what shaogo commented back in '09- there is absolutely no similarity to Gravy Master other than that they're both very dark and salty. Gravy Master is somewhat like Kitchen Bouquet, more a coloring than a real flavor. Maggi puts them both to shame!
I am from the Netherlands and Maggi is something we used to have on every household's diningtable to season soup, "snert" or peasoup doesn't taste the same without a little Maggi. Try to substitute the taste of Maggi without the salt for a herb called lovage( if I translated it ok), it's called lavas in Dutch and the fragrance is just like Maggi. Chickensoup with Lavas mjam.
An old thread , but...
Shake some Maggi on both sides of a rack of pork side ribs
Sprinkle both sides with Montreal steak spice
Fridge for a few hours
Grill over live charcoal, turning often, avoiding flare-ups
Splash with Maggi a second time towards the end of grilling.
Cut ribs on cutting board and serve with grilled romaine lettuce and grilled thick-cut tomaotes.
I remember maggi as a staple in Nigerian cooking. Until I saw the bottle in Chinatown, I thought it was a Nigerian product. :) By the way, we used maggi cubes.
I think the commercial jingle was....
For good cooking, use maggi cube.
good cooking, maggi cube
[something something ta da da!]
good cooking, use maggi cube!
I bought a large bottle for the nostalgic factor, but have not used it.
One of my favorites uses is on oriental style microwave steamed fish. I'm thinking originally, the fish is steamed in a steamer and soy is used. I have a recipe where the oriental writer, in her opinion, says Maggi is better in this instance
Whole cleaned fish, score, cover with plastic wrap and microwave on high until cooked
(I dunno, maybe 7-9 minutes)
Meanwhile, heat 1/4C vegetable oil on stove until smoking hot
Remove fish from microwave & drain (I like to put on clean plate)
Sprinkle with chopped cilantro, matchstick ginger, and sliced scallion
Pour scorching oil over fish (it'll splatter a bit)
Follow up with a liberal dosing of Maggi
Should end up looking like this
You can use fillets, but not same effect
I realize this is a four year old post, but I thought I'd add my two cents. Maggi is great on Vietnamese food. There's a pretty easy recipe for Vietnamese steak sandwiches (banh mi) on Martha Stewart Living. Google it: it's maybe not the MOST authentic recipe, but it's awesome tasting and easy to make; I recommend doubling the mayo the recipe calls for, using flat iron steak instead of flank (for tenderness) and sprinkling Maggi on both open sides of the toasted or grilled French roll.
I had this incredible Maggi sauce served with French fries at the Book Cadillac hotel in Detroit (Michael Symon's Roast is there, but this was a different restaurant in the same hotel so I am not sure if it is affiliated with him. I bough Maggi sauce right after that, but have no clue how to make the fry dip.
I think Zip Sauce is some kind of Michigan restaurant tradition. I was told you add some butter and/or olive oil to a pan you seared meat in and saute mushrooms in it. Then you set aside the mushrooms and deglaze the pan with some sherry and Maggi and add the mushrooms back to it. Some people add herbs or use balsamic vinegar or Worcestershire sauce instead of Maggi. You can buy a Zip Sauce that you deglaze the pan with from a place called Lelli's that claims to have invented it.
My local Safeway has the 200mL (6.7 fl. oz.) size of Maggi (made in China) on clearance from $3.99 to $1.99. Of course I had to buy a bottle to give it a try at that price.
So I've an alternate question. Has anyone used Maggi on something where it's totally ruined the dish?
I've a hankering for a repeat of this recipe I have for Orange Chicken where you fry the chicken pieces after giving them a coating of cornstarch-egg dip-panko crumbs (which came out surprisingly well), but the sauce needed something extra.
Tonight I had my first opportunity to use this bottle of Maggi I bought. I really thought I had some bbq sauce in the pantry, but I was all out.
I had everything to make one of those Bullseye copycat recipes, except oops, I was short a tablespoon of worcestershire sauce, but proceeded anyway.
After simmering the sauce on the stove for a while, I tasted it and it was just missing something, but not really missing worcestershire. I added some Maggi, a ¼ tsp. at a time until it took the tomatoey flavor from the ketchup out of the sauce.
The result is very, very nice. The sauce has that "can't quite put my finger on what it is" flavor to it, that I wasn't expecting to be the result.
I've made a second batch of BBQ sauce using Maggi, and changed a few things to make it better. I'm quite happy with the results. It doesn't have that overt molasses flavor that the darker sauces have, nor is it overly smoky, and it has a zippy taste with the heat level you'd expect from a medium-to-hot flavor in a supermarket brand.
So if you're like the OP and have a Costco-sized bottle of Maggi to go through, you might want to give this recipe a whirl:
Over low heat in a medium saucepan, melt:
4 Tbsp butter
1 C ketchup
6 Tbsp Worcestershire sauce
3 Tbsp white vinegar
1 Tbsp yellow mustard
1 Tbsp liquid hickory smoke
2 Tbsp honey
¼ tsp Tapatio hot sauce
1 tsp red pepper flakes
1½ tsp granulated onion
½ tsp cayenne pepper
1 tsp salt
1 Tbsp granulated sugar
½ C brown sugar
1½ tsp Maggi liquid seasoning
Simmer for approx. 15 minutes, stirring occasionally.
N.B. The original recipe I adapted this from had no black pepper in it, which I thought was a bit odd—I'm so used to salt and pepper in almost everything. So I left it out, and I don't think the sauce really needs it, but of course you're always welcome to add it if you wish.
I also saved a bit of the previous batch to compare to a repeat with the full amount of worcestershire sauce in it. Never realized before how important that is as an ingredient in bbq sauce.
So last night I made some white rice to go with dinner, and decided just to sprinkle some Maggi on a small portion of it to see what Maggi tasted like in comparison to other liquid seasonings such as soy sauce, worcestershire sauce, etc.
My goodness, all by itself, that's some nasty tasting stuff. If someone were to have given me a sample and said, "here taste this, it'll improve the flavor of many dishes you cook," I would have thought they were from Mars.
Funny how that works. As an ingredient, it was marvelous in the BBQ sauce I made with it.
(So there's no misunderstanding, no I'm NOT recommending you douse your rice with Maggi for a delicious treat. The rice was simply a neutral tasting vehicle instead of using a spoon.)
Continuing to experiment, last night I made meatballs and decided to add some Maggi. I started out with 2 lbs. of beef + a panade, eggs, and seasonings. I took about ¼ cup of the finished mixture out, split it in half, added a few drops of Maggi to one portion, then fried them both up in a skillet for tasting.
The one with the Maggi had a sharpness/brightness of flavor that the unadulterated sample lacked.
Not knowing how much to add overall, I split the remaining batch in half and added 1 tbsp. of Maggi liquid to one, ½ tbsp. to the other.
After baking, the batch with the full tbsp. both smelled and tasted like something had been added. Now knowing what Maggi tastes like, after the rice test, I could clearly identify the Maggi coming through. The one with ½ tbsp. per pound of meat resembled what I'd tasted in the mini-test, just a pleasant added brightness to the food.
What's interesting is that after I let the meatballs with the higher amount of Maggi simmer in a basic marinara sauce for a while, the "Maggi taste" seemed to dissipate a bit into the sauce, so the batch with the higher amount didn't seem to taste as Maggi'd.
The recipe I used, adjusted for what I believe to be the correct amount of Maggi, if anyone's interested:
Combine and set aside to fully absorb to create a 'panade':
4 English Muffins, ground to crumbs
1½ C milk
2 lbs. of 80/20 ground beef (or combination of your choice)
4 large eggs
½ C grated Parmesan cheese
1 lg. onion, pulverized to onion mush in a food processor
Stir thoroughly at this point to break up the meat, adding the prepared panade as you stir.
½ bunch of Italian parsley, finely chopped (roughly de-stemmed first)
1 tbsp. Italian seasoning
1½ tsp. ground black pepper
1½ tsp. Lawry's seasoned salt
1 tsp. crushed garlic
1 tbsp. Maggi liquid
Mix together thoroughly. Scoop out meatballs using a ¼ cup measure, and either pan-fry or bake at 325° for 30 minutes.
Makes about 28 meatballs.
Feedback welcomed as always.