Once you discover how easy it is to make a big batch of nuoc cham, a lively Vietnamese dipping sauce, you'll probably always have some on hand to throw over noodles, grilled meat, or salads. I serve it as a condiment for both fresh and fried spring rolls, too.
Using a mortar and pestle, grind together the garlic and sugar until the paste forms.
Alternatively, combine the ingredients in a mini food processor and process to a paste.
Transfer to a bowl and whisk in the fish sauce, rice vinegar, lime juice, and 1/4 cup (2 fl oz/60 ml) water.
Pour through a fine-mesh sieve into a clean bowl and add the chile, carrot, and daikon. Makes about 2/3 cup (5 fl oz/160 ml)
To make nuoc cham vegan, use a vegetarian fish sauce which is made with seaweed.