I have been thinking of making thai dishes and almost all recipes requires fish sauce or shrimp paste. Thankfully, I found The Kitchn Blog and the recipe she posted was easy to make and she even explained why fish sauce is important in Thai and Vietnamese cuisine.
Vegan Fish Sauce (I divided the portions for 1 cup)
(makes about 3 cups)
1 1/2 cups shredded seaweed (I use wakame)
6 cups water
6 fat cloves garlic, crushed but not peeled
1 T peppercorns (I used black peppers)
1 cup mushroom soy sauce (I used vegetarian mushroom oyster sauce)
1 T miso
Combine wakame, garlic, peppercorns and water in a large sauce pan and bring to a boil. Lower heat and simmer about 20 minutes. Strain and return the liquid back to the pot. Add soy sauce, bring back to a boil and cook until mixture is reduced and almost unbearable salty. Remove from heat and stir in miso.
The steps are really easy and within a few minutes the sauce was done. It tasted just like any fish sauce I had without the stinky fish smell and had a aromatic seaweed flavour to it.