Pronunciation: [HOY-sihn; hoy-SIHN]
Also called Peking sauce, this thick, reddish-brown sauce is sweet and spicy, and widely used in Chinese cooking. It's a mixture of soybeans, garlic, chile peppers and various spices. Hoisin is mainly used as a table condiment and as a flavoring agent for many meat, poultry and shellfish dishes. It can be found in Asian markets and many large supermarkets. Once opened, canned hoisin should be transferred to a nonmetal container, tightly sealed and refrigerated. Bottled hoisin can be refrigerated as is. Both will keep indefinitely when stored in this manner.
From The Food Lover's Companion, Fourth edition by Sharon Tyler Herbst and Ron Herbst. Copyright © 2007, 2001, 1995, 1990 by Barron's Educational Series, Inc.