At a glance, today’s entry looks to be an omelet, doesn’t it? No eggs were involved this week, though. Instead, we have a rice-flour crepe, lightly thin and pan-seared to crispy perfection, barely able to contain all the goodness within its grasp. This is Bánh Xèo (in English, pronounced “bun sale”), a street food made… Continue reading Take Another Look
After all, Charles Pham, chef at The Slanted Door in San Francisco, does. Among the many wonders he helps create in the restaurant kitchen, Mr. Pham chooses to make Caramelized Black Pepper Chicken for himself, his family and his friends when he’s at home. If it’s good enough to top an award-winning chef’s own menu,… Continue reading Please…Try This at Home
“Fusion” cuisine takes quite a few hits, admittedly on these pages, and elsewhere. Perhaps this dismissal is too hasty when cooks offer inspirations like today’s effort, Bánh Mì. Though the sandwich was developed in Vietnam and is among that cuisine’s most prominent preparations, bánh mì claims at least one French grandparent. It’s only natural, of… Continue reading C) Both of the Above
Last week brought duck, though the entire bird wasn’t used to prepare the entry. What to do with the remainders, then? Not wishing to be wasteful, and being of a culinary bent, this journal’s future path was clear – make soup! Specifically, Vietnamese duck soup, or pho, elevates the leftovers to stardom and beyond. Today’s… Continue reading Ah, but What Leftovers!
Sometimes, when things don’t work quite as planned, it becomes necessary to improvise to reach the goal. Such was the case recently, when I attempted to prepare the dish pictured above, Ji Si Chang, or Chicken and Vegetable Rice Rolls, from Andrea Nguyen’s latest cookbook, Asian Dumplings. The filling, a mixture of chicken, shitake mushrooms,… Continue reading Afternoon at the Improv
The latest entry is a Vietnamese staple, măng tây cua, a crab and asparagus soup. This is the perfect time for soup making in general because a persistent cold snap has left May feeling more like March. How welcome would a nice warm bowl of tropical-glistened shellfish be right now? Moreover, the chilly weather can’t last forever,… Continue reading OK, You Like Soup, We Get It
So what’s with all the soup lately? Last week it was Pumpkin Soup and today the blog serves Bun Vit Mang, or Vietnamese duck soup. A pattern emerges. Why not? The last two Saturday afternoons (usually my time to create) have been cold and rainy, not the best situation for outdoor fun, but absolutely perfect… Continue reading What’s Vietnamese for “Quack”?