I've been searching for kecap manis, a sweet soy sauce used in Indonesian and other South East Asian dishes so I could try out a few recipes. H Mart didn't have it on previous visits so I decided to call around to the various Oriental grocery stores here. Nothing from Daily Spices, Lotte Plaza, or the Fiesta Springfield Oriental Market. My only option was to try Great Wall Supermarket in Falls Church because they carried Vietnamese foods.
As soon as we walked in the door, I was transported back to Asia. The smell is so unique. I miss traveling around that part of the world. When I was a newbie Navy nurse, I was so upset that my options for serving in Europe were so limited. Now, I don't think you could get me to go there if I had the option to transfer to Okinawa, Japan, or Guam.
If you are a connoisseur of soy sauces, hang out in the Oriental food marts. (If you're hung up on cleanliness, don't go.) If you're a vegetarian, have no fear---they even make vegetarian soy sauce. We decided we needed to try the Mushroom Soy Sauce, and I did find the Kecap Manis.
My sirloin has been thinly sliced across the grain and is marinating in a combination of kecap manis and soy sauce en route to becoming beef satay. Yum!