Sriracha (Thai: ศรีราชา, Thai pronunciation: [sǐːrāːt͡ɕʰāː]; English: //) is a type of hot sauce or chili sauce made from a paste of chili peppers, distilled vinegar, garlic, sugar, and salt. It is named after the coastal city of Si Racha, in Chonburi Province of eastern Thailand, where it may have been first produced for dishes served at local seafood restaurants.
In Thailand, sriracha is frequently used as a dipping sauce, particularly for seafood. In Vietnamese cuisine, sriracha appears as a condiment for phở, fried noodles, a topping for spring rolls (chả giò), and in sauces.
According to the Thai "Chomrom Rak Si Racha" (The Si Racha Lovers' Association) the sauce was first made in Si Racha by Burmese sawmill workers. The association interviewed 88-year-old Thawat Wiphisamakun, known locally as Ah Pae. Ah Pae's maternal grandmother had a small shop in Si Racha. The Burmese workers came to the shop to buy chillies, salt, vinegar, and sugar to pound in a mortar to make their sauce. Eventually she started making the sauce herself, both for family use and for sale to customers. Soon, another customer, Kimsua Thimkrachang, began to buy large quantities of chillies, salt, vinegar, and sugar. He was making the chilli sauce for sale, using the brand name, "Sauce Si Racha Traa Phukhao Thong" (Golden Mountain Brand Si Racha Sauce) with a picture of the Golden Mountain Temple on the label. Its name was "Si Racha Phanich".
In Thailand, the sauce is most often called sot Siracha (Thai: ซอสศรีราชา) and only sometimes nam phrik Siracha (Thai: น้ำพริกศรีราชา). Traditional Thai sriracha sauce tends to be tangier in taste, and runnier in texture than non-Thai versions.
In a Bon Appétit magazine interview, US Asian-foods distributor Eastland Food Corporation asserted that the Thai brand of hot sauce Sriraja Panich, which Eastland distributes, is the original "sriracha sauce" and was created in Si Racha, Thailand, in the 1930s from the recipe of a housewife named Thanom Chakkapak.
Within the United States, sriracha is associated with a sauce produced by Huy Fong Foods[not in citation given] and is sometimes referred to as "rooster sauce" or "cock sauce" due to the image of a rooster on the bottle. Other variations of sriracha have appeared in the US market, including a sriracha that is aged in whiskey barrels.
Various restaurants in the US, including Wendy's, Applebee's, P.F. Chang's, Pizza Hut, Domino's Pizza, Jack in the Box, McDonald's, Subway, Taco Bell, White Castle, Gordon Biersch, Chick-fil-a, Firehouse Subs, Noodles & Company, Starbucks and Burger King have incorporated sriracha into their dishes, sometimes mixing it with mayonnaise or into dipping sauces. Blue Diamond, a leading producer of almond products, markets a sriracha-flavor alongside their other flavors. The name "sriracha" is considered to be a generic term since the creator of the Huy Fong Foods sauce, David Tran, did not trademark it.
In 2013, American filmmaker Griffin Hammond released Sriracha, a documentary about the origin and production of sriracha sauce.
Roland Foods in New York makes its own variety, Sriracha Chili Sauce, in a similarly shaped yellow-capped bottle featuring two dragons instead of a rooster. Frito-Lay is testing a sriracha-flavored potato chip, and Subway is experimenting with a creamy sriracha sauce for sandwiches.
The Thais also make many versions of [sriracha] sauce... which tend to be more liquid and pourable than Huy Fong’s. Sriraja Panich has a lovely balance of bright chile heat, delicate sweetness, vinegary tang, and garlicky backnote.
But like most obsessives, Erskine is fiercely loyal to 'rooster sauce' as some know the brand (in the US it is sometimes also called 'cock sauce').
Two dozen applications to use the word have been filed with the United States Patent and Trademark Office. None has been granted for Sriracha alone. The word is now too generic, the agency determined. ...Unlike the name, Tran trademarked his rooster logo and distinctive bottle.