Worcestershire sauce sub for Short Rib Ragu?

I am making Minimally Invasive's Short Rib Ragu, and I just realized that I have no Worcestershire sauce. Is there an acceptable substitute? I only need three or four dashes.

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AntoniaJames
AntoniaJames February 22, 2011

Red wine or balsamic vinegar + tamarind.

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testkitchenette
testkitchenette February 22, 2011

Maybe even more elusive, but how about a sardine or two, soy sauce/tamari, miso paste, a tiny bit of nam pla (Thai fish sauce)...

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cookinginvictoria
cookinginvictoria February 22, 2011

Thank you for responding AntoniaJames and testkitchenette! Alas, I don't have any tamarind either, so can't go that route. But I did do a modified version of what testkitchenette suggested. I added a bit of tamari, miso and fish sauce. Decided not to do sardines since there are already anchovies in the dish.

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AntoniaJames
AntoniaJames February 22, 2011

Do you have any lime juice or vinegar? You need the sharp notes, too. (I cannot remember the ragu recipe, but if it already has a vinegar or other acid in it, you probably are okay just with the fish sauce. Be careful with the salt, though! Tamari, miso and fish sauce are all salty, whereas Worcestershire is not so much. ;o)

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cookinginvictoria
cookinginvictoria February 22, 2011

Good point! I wasn't thinking about the acidity. There is a half bottle of red wine in the braising liquid, but I will add a few drops of red wine vinegar, too.

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Minimally Invasive
Minimally Invasive February 23, 2011

Good answers, all around! Since there wasn't much Worcestershire sauce in the recipe, I'd either leave it out entirely or just increase one of the other umami ingredients slightly. (Sorry I'm so late to the game -- I only just got an email about it!)

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Jean | Delightful Repast
Jean | Delightful Repast February 26, 2011

I've sometimes used a little soy sauce in place of Worcestershire sauce. Not that I ever run out of Worcestershire sauce. I grew up with an English mother--I don't run out of the stuff! But if I'm making something for a vegan or vegetarian that I usually put the WS in, I'll sometimes use soy sauce instead with good results.

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