On the Sauce: Chris Coombs’ Custom Boston Chops Steak Sauce
Food styling by Rowena Day/Ennis
When chef Chris Coombs started planning his menu for Boston Chops, a casual-chic steakhouse opening in the South End this month, he began sampling a variety of steak sauces—and was sorely disappointed. “I just found them to be flabby and unbalanced,” Coombs says of the bottled varieties that he tested. “I started looking at ingredient lists. The more I dug, the more I became discouraged and realized that there were a lot of food modifiers and chemicals being put into the sauce.” So Coombs decided to make one of his own, with the ideal balance of sweet, salt, and umami. The finished product is a blend of 20 ingredients, including prunes, which Coombs uses to produce a smooth texture and light, jammy sweetness. He’s so pleased with the sauce that he’s hoping to sell it in stores.