Filled with spices and herbs, this zingy and zesty sauce will spruce up any summer dish.
Place the lime leaves, lemongrass, garlic, chiles, ginger, and cilantro into your food processor and pulse to a rough paste. Make the caramel by placing the sugars into a heavy 2-quart saucepan. Heat the sugar, undisturbed, until it melts and starts to bubble. When it turns dark brown and just begins to smoke, remove it from the heat and gently shake the pot from side to side as the caramel starts to burn. This distributes the heat nicely so it has a more uniform color.
Add the vegetable paste from the processor and stir to combine, being mindful of the hot steam that will be generated upward. Bring the mixture back to a hard boil and add the combined vinegar, fish sauce, and soy sauce again being mindful of the steam.
Bring it back to a boil and cook to the desired consistency: one or two minutes for a thinner style sauce and four-five minutes for slightly thicker. Cool and mix well before pouring into glass jars. Refrigerate. It will thicken slightly as it cools.