Vietnamese Vermicelli w/Grilled Pork Patties (Bun Cha Ha Noi)

This is a great Vietnamese noodle dish that's light and just packed with flavor. It's like a salad with a delicious dipping sauce, or dressing, and it's so easy to put together too. Back in March of 2016, President Barrack Obama visited Vietnam and he made this dish famous with a video clip of him casually enjoying this dish at a local Bun Cha Ha Noi shop with Anthony Bourdain. It's most often done with ground pork but you can easily switch out using ground chicken or turkey, even. Grill these patties over an open fire is the ultimate but an indoor grill or a George Foreman works just as great. Here's how it's done if you're curious.

RECIPE for 4 servings:

1 lb of cooked vermicelli
3-4 leaves of red lettuce, chopped
Various fresh herbs such as mints, corriander, perilla, etc., rough chopped

Pork Patties:
1 lb of ground pork, or chicken/turkey
1 tbs of fish sauce
2 tbs of honey
1 tsp of chinese 5 spice
1 tsp dark soy or caramel sauce
1/2 tsp of fresh ground black pepper
1/2 tbs sugar
A dash of salt
2 tbs minced garlic
2-3 shallots, minced
2-3 stalks of spring onion- top portion, chopped
1 tbs oyster sauce

Dipping sauce:
1/2 cup of warm water
1/4 cup of sugar
4 tbs of vinegar
2 tbs of minced fresh garlic
1 tbs of minced fresh thai chilis
4 tbs of premium fish sauce
1/2 cup of pickled carrot/daikon/papaya


Combine the meat with all the ingredients within the pork patty section. Then mix gently and make into little 2-inch round, 1/3-inch thick patties. Cook on a non-stick grill for about 2-3 minutes on each side, or until cooked. 
Serve the patties over a bed of fresh noodles and veggies. Then laddle a couple spoonful of dipping sauce and enjoy!

Kimchi Fries with Beef and Spicy Mayo Toppings

Hi there! Who doesn't like fries with some toppings of beef and spicy mayo? Here's the ultimate weekend snack to really impress your friends and family. Come to the think of it, it's one of those dishes that's popular with Asian Americans and our non-Asian friends, because it marries perfectly the best of two cultures, American and Korean/Asian. Plus, it's a cinch to pull together. Now go and grab some frozen fries and fresh cilantro and onions and you're almost there. Check out how I make this dish here. Enjoy!

Ingredients:
1 lb of Ore-Da frozen fries, baked as directed
1 handful of cilantro, chopped
1/2 white onion, diced
1 cup of store-bought kimchi, chopped
1 tbs of brown sugar
2 tbs of soy sauce
1 tbs of toasted sesame seeds

1/3 lb of beef ribeye slices, chopped, marinade with:
1 tbs soysauce
1 tbs of rice vinegar
1 tbs minced garlic and
1 tsp brown sugar

Spicy siracha mayo:
3 tbs of mayo
1 tbs of siracha
 

 

Vietnamese Puff Pastry with Quail Egg

My mom taught me this semi-homemade pastry when I was about 9 years old and I love making it at home since. Super easy with the store-bought dough and never fails. Normally it's with ground pork but with our effort to be more healthy, my family uses ground chicken instead and also we add in quail eggs to update the recipe from years ago. Enjoy!

Here's a video on how I made it!

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Ingredients:
1 box of puff pastry
1/2 lb of ground chicken
1/2 white onion, diced
1/2 tsp of ground nutmeg
2 tbs of oyster sauce
1/2 tsp of salt
1/2 tsp of sugar
12 quail eggs, hard boiled and remove shell
Freshly ground black pepper
1 large egg, divided yolk from white

Endive Crab Boat Appetizer (Salach Cua)

Happy Holidays everyone! I'm in a festive mood and want to serve up something colorful, cheerful and delicious to stay in tune with the holiday spirit. So here we have the simple endive salad leaves that serve as boats to deliver some fresh lump crab to our la bouche. I know you'll love it just as much as all my family and friends who have enjoyed a few "boats" of this deliciousness. Make this soon!

RECIPE for about 6-8 servings

1 lb of fresh lump crab meat
2-3 bulbs of endive salad, separate into each leaf
1 cup of grape tomatoes, half
4 tbs of good mayo
1 handful of chopped parsley
1/2 cup of chopped red onion
Fresh ground black pepper, to taste
A squeeze or two of fresh lemon juice
2 pinch of cayenne pepper


In a salad bowl, combine all the ingredients, except endive and tomatoes,  to the crab meat. Be gentle to toss to preserve the lumps for the crab meat. Then spoon the crab meat mixture to the endive leaf. Place some tomatoes in the middle of the serving tray. Enjoy!

 

 

 

Prawns in Tamarind Sauce (Tom Cang Rim Me)

What's not to love about these delicious and gorgeous looking giant prawns with blue legs. Yup, their legs are of rich dark blue, thus Vietnamese call these "blue giant prawns", and rightly so. Cooking these are just so simple. I'm going after the sweet, salty, sour and spicy... my holy "Four S's" :) I hope you'll enjoy this crazy easy recipe

 

RECIPE FOR 4 servings

8 prawns, thawed out
1/2 cup of minced white onion
5-6 cloves of garlic, minced
4 tbs of tamarind sauce
4 tbs of fish sauce
4 tbs of oyster sauce
1 tbs of sugar
1-2 tbs of crispy chili in oil
1/2 cup of coco water
Olive oil for cooking
Fresh ground black pepper
A bed of watercress, slices of red and yellow bell pepper, and tomato

Add a little oil to hot pan. Then add in onion and garlic to saute for a few mins until fragrant. Add in the oyster sauce and then tamarind sauce. Cook for about 3-4 mins then add in fish sauce and a little sugar to your taste. Add in all the prawns. Cook them about 4 mins per side. Add in a little coco water when the sauce seems to dry up. Add in crispy chili and oil. Turn off the heat and let the prawns cool for a couple of mins before plating on veggie platter.

Enjoy with steamed rice or without.