When ordering seafood, especially fried fish, there is a special white sauce that accompanies the dish that enhances the dining experience. This white sauce is called tartar sauce it’s an aioli or mayonnaise-based sauce that is originated from the French and first appear in a 19th-century book from France. The sauce and its name have been found in cookbooks since the 19th century. The name derives from the French sauce “tartare” name after the tartars from the Eurasian Steppe, who once occupied Ukraine and parts of Russia. In Turkey, a condiment known as tarator has traditionally been used as a condiment to fried seafood but Turkish tarator is usually a sauce based on tahini, not mayonnaise or aioli, but in regards to being a creamy, tangy accompaniment to fried fish or seafood, it is extremely similar to tartar sauce. The actual inventor of this sauce is not currently known but it easy to say that the actual origin of the sauce is indeed found East of France.
The sauce usually consists of capers or diced pickles, and in some places, cream of tartar is used and sometimes added with hard-boiled egg, this sauce is usually served as a condiment paired with various fried seafoods. it’s very easy to make and this sauce is perfectly paired with seafood, toasted or deep-fried breads and hot wings with mojos.
Tartar Sauce Recipe
- 1 cup mayonnaise
- 3 tsp. Lemon Juice
- 1 tsp. Kosher Salt
- 2 tsp. Dijon Mustard
- 2 tbsp. Minced Red/White Onion
- 2 tbsp. Minced Sweet Pickle
- 1 tsp. Minced Parsley
- 1 tsp. Granulated Sugar
- ¼ tsp Ground Black Pepper
Prepare all ingredients, minced sweet pickle, and onion finely, the finer the better.
Take a large mixing bowl and transfer the mayonnaise in it, add the lemon juice and mustard then mix until the color of mustard blends with the mayonnaise.
Add the minced onion and pickle (minced capers may also be added).
Add salt, sugar, ground black pepper and minced parsley, mix them thoroughly until well combined.
Serve in a small sauce dish paired to your favorite finger foods.
Step 1: Prepare all ingredients
Pickle can be bought as a whole or sliced, just minced it into finely small pieces, you may use red or white cocktail onion minced it finely. Use freshly squeezed lemon juice and freshly ground black pepper. You can buy ready-made mayonnaise or you can make your own mayonnaise. You may use curly parsley or plain Italian parsley chop it into fine pieces, I prefer that you use kosher salt, so that it will easily be diluted in the sauce as the sauce is thick and not watery and no heat is applied. Use granulated sugar or much better use caster sugar. Make sure that all your ingredients are readily scaled and measured in separate dishes before you start.
Step 2: Mix all wet ingredients
Let’s start with all the wet ingredients take a large mixing bowl you can use steel, ceramic or pyrex bowl. Transfer the mayonnaise in the bowl and then together add the dijon mustard and freshly squeezed lemon juice that are readily measured (homemade mayonnaise can be used but the color might be slightly changed into yellow due to the color of egg yolk).
Mix them all together using a wire whisk or a spoon, until the color of the mustard is completely blended with the mayonnaise (do not use yellow/American mustard as it will turn your sauce into yellow due to color additives).
Step 3: Add all dry ingredients
Next, add all the dry ingredients, add the finely minced sweet pickle and minced onion into the mayonnaise mixture then whisk again until the onion and pickle are submerge and completely combined with the sauce. You want to make sure that your pickles and onion is finely minced so that no large lumps of onion or pickle are visible in your sauce, you want your sauce to be smooth at the same time creamy.
Lastly add the readily measured kosher salt, granulated sugar, minced parsley, and freshly ground black pepper in the mixture then whisk it again thoroughly until all ingredients are well combined into the sauce.
Transfer the tartar sauce into small sauce dish then serve your it as a condiment to wings and Mojos or any of your desired finger foods or fried appetizers.
This sauce has a tangy, creamy, rich flavor. The mayonnaise keeps it cool in flavor, making it especially suitable for fried foods as a counterpoint, and when lots of acidic ingredients are added, tartar sauce can be almost mouth-puckering, a trait that some people enjoy. It can be used as a dipping sauce or served directly on food, although the sauce can soften the breading on fried foods, making it soggy if it sits too long. The sauce may also serve as a salad dressing, tossed with vegetables to make a simple salad.
This is best paired with your appetizer dishes in parties, birthdays or holiday gatherings.
You may also add hard boil eggs to the sauce, using a mortar and pestle crush the eggs into a paste before adding to the sauce. It gives the sauce a more rich creaminess and thickness.
Most cooks recommend blending the tartar sauce to make it more smoother and refrigerating it at least an hour before it is to be used. This gives the flavors a chance to mellow and blend, with the seasoning being adjusted as needed right before service. The sauce should ideally stay refrigerated as much as possible to reduce the risk of foodborne illness, although the high acid level does help to inhibit bacterial growth. It can keep for up to a week or two, with commercial versions including stabilizers that keep the product good for weeks or months after opening.
The Tartar sauce is one of the delicious aspects of French cooking that we enjoy today.
Jen Miller is a former electrical engineer and product specialist with more than 20 years of product design and testing experience. She has designed more than 200 products for Fortune 500 companies, in fields ranging from home appliances to sports gear and outdoor equipment. She founded Jen Reviews to share her knowledge and critical eye for what makes consumers tick, and adopts a strict no-BS approach to help the reader filter through the maze of products and marketing hype out there. She writes regularly and has been featured on Forbes, Fast Company, The Muse, The Huffington Post, Tiny Buddha and MindBodyGreen.