Soy sauce

 Soy sauce Key facts Dark soy sauce is more often used in cooking rather than as a condiment, while the light version is often used for dipping. Good-quality soy sauce is made from just soy beans, water, salt and wheat. Soy sauce is high in antioxidants but can also contain quite a lot of salt which needs to be limited in the diet.

In this country we've been quite slow switching on to soy sauce, but now – wow! – soy sauce has landed.

It is an ancient and crucially important ingredient in the Far East, used not just for seasoning but also for dipping, marinating, tenderising and at the same time purifying. What we need to concern ourselves with for the purposes of cooking is the enormous range in quality, and for cooks who care about quality the best soy sauce is made in Japan, where it is naturally fermented from wheat, soya beans, salt and water (the only ingredients that should appear on the label).

Short-cut unnaturally fermented soy sauces are not in the same league, so if you stick to Japanese you'll be sure you're using the best.

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