Crying Tiger Sauce | Recipe

Nam Jim Jaew Sauce (Crying Tiger Sauce)

In honor of the Lunar New Year celebration, we created a Thai-style Crying Tiger dish because it’s year of the tiger! So, pop that champagne bottle open, but make sure you’ve got this dish too. 😉


  • 3 tsp fish sauce
  • 2 tsp tamarind paste/sauce (if you can find this ingredient)
  • 2 tsp lime juice
  • 1 tsp sugar cane (substitute with brown sugar)
  • 1 tsp hot chili flakes
  • 1 tsp toasted rice (crushed)


  • 15-20 minutes


1. Mix all ingredients together (except the toasted rice) and adjust the flavor to your liking. You want more of a tangy punch? Add more lime. Need more spice? Add more chili flakes or eve one of your favorite peppers! You’re the chef here.

2. To make the toasted rice, use a dry skillet and toast the rice until golden brown over medium-low. Take your time moving it off heat and shaking if it gets too hot, then returning to heat. Once it’s got a nice tan, crush the rice (but not quite to a powder) in a mortar and pestle, spice grinder, or food processor. If you don’t have any of this, you can also add the rice to a Ziploc and crush.

3. Then top the sauce with:

  • Toasted rice
  • Shallots
  • Cilantro
  • Scallions or green onion

That’s it, you’re done! This flavor packed sauce goes great with a delicious steak! Want to try something new? Marinate the steak with fish sauce and watered down cane sugar for about 30 minutes before grilling or pan frying. Serve as salad, appetizers or as a meal with sticky rice/steam rice.