Kecap manis is a popular condiment in Indonesia and in other parts of Asia. It is commonly referred to as a sweet soy sauce because of its sweeter taste than standard soy sauce. Kecap manis also has a thicker consistency making it more of a syrup rather than a basic, watery sauce. This particular condiment is commonly used as a marinade for meats or as a sauce for various dishes. Some also use kecap manis as a flavoring for meats and vegetable dishes, and this is especially true for people who want a sweet taste in their meals. Kecap manis is typically flavored with various spices like garlic, star anise, and palm sugar, among others. Its distinct flavor is what makes people love this particular condiment. In cases where a person cannot find a bottle of kecap manis in the grocery store, though, this person may need to create a substitute condiment for it.
One great substitute for kecap manis is to put some sugar in basic soy sauce. Mixing soy sauce with sugar is the most popular and the easiest to do when it comes to creating kecap manis substitutes. One just needs to mix both ingredients in a cooking pot and boil the mixture for a couple of minutes. Since sugar is used, one needs to make sure that the heat is kept at a low or medium setting. It is also necessary to stir the soy sauce and sugar mixture regularly until the consistency becomes thicker and syrup-like. Once the boiling point is reached, the heat in the pot must be lowered to let the mixture cool. As the kecap manis substitute cools, its consistency will also become thicker. Once cooled down, this particular kecap manis substitute recipe may now be served and used as a sauce or flavoring to other dishes. For the more adventurous, other ingredients such as garlic and star anise may also be added to the kecap manis substitute recipe.