The salad dressing is perfect for Asian-style salads, and puts an Asian twist on Western salads. Here’s the recipe. Photo courtesy Dakota Beef Company.



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ERIC DANTIS is a chef in residence at THE NIBBLE.



June 2010


Product Reviews / Main Nibbles / Oil, Vinegar & Salad Dressing

Palcha Asian Salad Dressing & Marinade

Asian Dressing In A Soy Sauce Base Dresses Up Salad, Meat & Fish


CAPSULE REPORT: We get lots of dressings to taste. Most of them aren’t different from the others. But in Palcha dressings, we found something special. Asian cuisine tends to be aromatic, complex and well-balanced. We appreciate that Palcha Products managed to put these crowd-pleasing characteristics into a bottle that you can use as your go-to ingredient every time you create a meal. Though the description on the jars read, “Soy sauce based salad dressing & marinade,” this is a beguilingly simple statement for the complex flavor this dressing and marinade delivers. This is Page 1 of a two-page review. Click the black links below to visit the Page 2.



Palcha Products appeared the scene thanks to family members who ate Eileen Park’s mother’s cuisine at family gatherings. Among all of the delicious dishes, everyone raved about the salad. So in 2007, when Eileen was looking for the right entrepreneurial opportunity, she began to bottle the dressing and sell it at the local farmers’ market.

She took the traditional Thai recipe and adapted the bold flavors to an American audience, without removing the flare. After several months of refining the recipe, she began to sell to local specialty food stores.

We tested two of the three dressings—ChiliCha and SoyCha. We used the products both as salad dressings and marinades. The two were so good that we quickly polished off the bottles.

ChiliCha Salad Dressing & Marinade

If you love Asian-style chili sauces, you’re in for a treat. With sesame overtones and deep chili flavor, ChiliCha—the spicier of the flavors—is tasty without being blow-your-socks-off fiery—an experience delivered by too many Asian chili sauces.

When added to a salad, expect a very nice creeping, almost tingly heat, thanks to some very subtle sweetness. Be aware that its deep, rich, chili flavor lends itself better to a heartier salad with bits of chicken or even steak. Because the dressing was so bold, we found that it had a tendency to cover up more delicate greens.

To remedy this, simply add a few squeezes of lemon, lime or orange juice or a few drops of vinegar and you can expect the party in your mouth to continue.

You can also try ChiliCha:

  • As a marinade for thicker cuts of meat like NY Strip or bone in pork chop
  • As a dressing with a hit of citrus for your steak or chicken salad
  • To brush on a piece of halibut or swordfish before grilling or pan roasting

Here’s a recipe for Thai Beef Salad. Use Chili-Cha instead of making the dressing in the recipe.

ChiliCha isn’t as fiery as its name. Product photography by Hannah Kaminsky | THE NIBBLE.


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