Tartar sauce - 4 delicious recipes for this fish accompaniment.

tartar sauce
Tartar sauce is a thick, white, cold sauce, based on mayonnaise, which is typically served with deep-fried fish or seafood.

The sauce was invented by the French, who named the condiment "sauce tartare", however it was actually named for the Tatar people, who settled and ruled in Mongolia and parts of Eastern Europe.
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Tartar sauce can be made in minutes, although it should be stored in the refrigerator for at least an hour before serving.

This popular accompaniment to fish contains a number of vegetables and herbs, which are blended together with mayonnaise and then refrigerated.

Tartar sauce can be bought in jars from the supermarket, however making your own sauce from scratch usually tastes better and in this case is no hassle at all.

You can start off by making a simple tartar sauce, adding ingredients to your favourite brand of mayonnaise. For those with a little more experience in the kitchen, you could even make your own homemade mayonnaise, which you could subsequently transform into a delicious tartar sauce.

Recipes for tartar sauce in the UK differ slightly to those from the US. British recipes include capers, gherkins, parsley, chives and lemon juice in their ingredients, whilst in the US minced onion, sweet pickle or dill relish and capers are added. Sometimes hard-boiled eggs and olives may also be included.

The sauce can be prepared in a food processor or blender but may just as easily be made by mixing the ingredients together in an ordinary mixing bowl.

The prepared tartar sauce should be kept in a jar with a screw-on lid for a maximum of 1 week.

Below are four different recipes for tartar sauce including one, which gives instructions on how to make homemade mayonnaise from scratch.

Tartar Sauce (with relish)

Ingredients
  • 1 cup of mayonnaise
  • 2 tbsp of lemon juice
  • 1 tbsp of sweet pickle or dill relish
  • 1 tbsp of minced onion
  • salt and pepper to season
Method
  1. Combine the mayonnaise, relish and minced onion in a small mixing bowl, stirring thoroughly to mix the flavours well.
  2. Add the lemon juice.
  3. Season with the salt and pepper and stir well.
  4. Cover the bowl with cling film and place in the refrigerator for a minimum of 1 hour before serving.
  5. Serve with deep-fried fish, seafood or fish cakes.

Tartar sauce (with capers and egg)

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Ingredients
  • ½ cup of mayonnaise
  • 1 hard-boiled egg
  • ¼ of a small chopped onion
  • 1 chopped dill pickle
  • 1 tbsp of capers
  • 1 tbsp of lemon juice
  • 1 tsp of chives
  • salt and pepper
Method
  1. Cut the hard-boiled egg, dill pickle and onion into small pieces.
  2. Chop the chives into small pieces.
  3. Place all of the ingredients into a blender or food processor and mix until the ingredients have combined together.
  4. Transfer to an airtight container and refrigerate for at least an hour before using.

Tartare sauce

Ingredients
  • 8 fl oz (225 ml) of mayonnaise
  • 1 tbsp of chopped gherkins
  • 1 tbsp of chopped capers
  • 1 tbsp of lemon juice
  • 1 tbsp of freshly chopped chives
  • 1 tbsp of freshly chopped parsley
  • salt and pepper
Method
  1. Make sure that all the ingredients that need chopping are finely chopped into small pieces.
  2. Place all of the ingredients together into a mixing bowl and combine thoroughly with a spoon or spatula.
  3. Check the seasoning and adjust if necessary.
  4. Cover the bowl with a layer of cling film and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes before serving with your choice of fish or seafood.

Purely homemade tartar sauce

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Ingredients
  • For the mayonnaise
    • 2 egg yolks
    • 300 ml (½ pint) olive oil
    • 2 tsp of white wine vinegar
    • 1 tsp of Dijon mustard
    • ½ tsp of sugar
    • salt and pepper
  • For the tartar sauce
    • 4 tsp of chopped capers
    • 4 tsp of chopped gherkins
    • 4 tsp of freshly chopped parsley
    • 2 tsp of chopped chives
    • 2 tbsp of lemon juice
Method
  1. First of all prepare the homemade mayonnaise. Start off by placing all of the mayonnaise ingredients except for the olive oil into a food processor or blender and combine until the ingredients have blended together to form a smooth and pale-coloured paste.
  2. With the processor running, very slowly to begin with, start adding the olive oil through the feeder tube.
  3. Continue to pour in the olive oil in a steady stream until it has all been used up and the mixture has thickened to the desired consistency.
  4. Add all of the tartar sauce ingredients except for the lemon juice and blend together until combined.
  5. Add the lemon juice at the end, drop by drop, until the desired taste has been reached.
  6. Season with salt and pepper if required.
  7. Transfer the tartar sauce to a jar with a screw-on lid and refrigerate for at least an hour before using.
  8. Keep in the refrigerator for up to three days.
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