Thursday, March 31, 2005

Măng Tây Xào Nấm Tỏi

Sauteed Mushroom and Asparagus in Garlic

1 lb asparagus, peeled
2 cups button mushroom, if large quartered
4 cloves garlic, minced
7 sprigs cilantro, minced
vegetable oil
salt and peper to tatse.

Use a vegetable peeler to peel the asparagus, starting from the head, eliminate the fibrous peel. Cut off the woody part in the bottom, wash.
brush off the mushroom, quarter.
Add oil in a large pan over high heat, add asparagus, cook until soft ( 5-7 minutes depend on how thick or thin the asparagus is). Add garlic, salt and pepper, stir well for 2 more mins, add cilatro.
Same with the mushroom.

Bò Lúc Lắc

Beef Luk Lak

1 lb beef chuck short ribs, cubed
1/2 onion, cubed
1 T oyster sauce
1 T maggie
2 t sugar
3 cloves garlic, minced
fresh ground pepper

Combine oyster sauce, soy sauce, sugar, garlic, pepper in a bowl. Add beef and marinate in refrigerator for 45 minutes.
Heat butter in a pan over high flame, add onion and cook for 3 minutes, add beef and leave it to brown one side (3-5 mins) then stir to cook for couple more minutes. Ground some fresh pepper, serve immediatelỵ

Tuesday, March 29, 2005

Mướp Xào Lòng Gà

2 Gourd loofah
1 cup chicken giblets
2 scallion, cut into 1-inch lenghts
3 cloves garlic, minced
fish sauce to taste
fresh ground pepper
1 T vegetable oil
3 sprigs cilantro to garnish

Peel gourd, wash, cut in half then slice into 1/2-inch thick.
Clean chicken giblets, cut into pieces, heart in half; gizzard, liver sliced.
Put oil into a pan over high heat, add garlic and cook until fragant. Add chicken giblets. cook for 5 minutes or until done. Add gourd, stir well, until cooked. add fish sauce to taste, pepper, scallion. Garnish with cilantro when serve, ground some fresh pepper on top.

Cá Nấu Thì Là

2 white perch
5 roman tomatos, skinned off
2 cups dill, cut into 2-inches lenghts
2 scallion, cut into 1-inch lenghts
1 T fish sauce
pepper to taste

Put a medium pot of water (about 6-8 cups) on high flame, bring to boil.
Wash tomatoes, cut stem end, and core an X through the skin on the other end. Blanch them in boiling water for 5-30 seconds. Check the skin on the X, if it looks like it's peeling away then take them out, peel the skin off in cold water. Put the peeled tomatoes back in the pot, turn to medium-low heat, cook for 10-15 minutes.
Add the fish in, cook for 6 more minutes. Skim off scum. add fish sauce and pepper. Add scallion and dill in. Taste.

Saturday, March 26, 2005

Xôi Trứng Kiến (Ant Eggs)

Ant Eggs with Sticky Rice

2 cups sticky rice, soacked in cold water for 8hrs or more
1 cup ant eggs
3 shallots, thinly sliced
1 T. vegetable oil, or butter
salt and pepper to taste

Fill the pot with about 2 inches of water, place the conical steamer basket in the pot, and put the rice in the basket, sprinkle with salt. Over high heat, bring water to boil. Make sure the water doesn't run dry. Cook for 30 minutes.
Soak ant eggs lightly in warm water to clean out all the ants. drained.
Place a pan over medium heat, add butter (or oil), add shallot and stir evenly until it turns light yellow. Add ant eggs, stir lightly and well until cook, about 3-5 mins. Set aside.
Place sticky rice in a dish, top with ant eggs.

Đậu Phụ Nhồi

Stuffed Fried Tofu

1 block firm tofu
1/3 lb lean pork, minced
3 water chestnuts, minced
1 shallot, minced
2 small wooden ear mushroom, soaked and minced
1/2 ounce cellophane noodles , soaked and diced
cooking oil
salt and pepper to taste

Cut the tofu to any size and shape you want, slit it leaving 1/2" uncut edge.
Mix pork, water chestnut, shallot, mushroom, cellophane noodles in a bowl. Add salt and pepper to taste. Stuff the tofu with stuffing.
Heat oil in a pan over medium heat. Fry the stuffed tofu, turn all the sides to make sure it cook evenly.

Cà Chua Nhồi

Tomato Farci

3 ripe tomatos
1/4 lean pork, minced
1 jar crab meat
1 wooden ear mushroom, soaked and minced
1/4 ounce cellophane noodles, soaked and chopped
1/4 onion, minced
1 shallot, minced
1 clove garlic, minced
1/4 cup vegetable oil
1 T ketchup
1 T white wine
salt, sugar and pepper to taste
green onion and cilantro to garnish, chopped

Mix pork, crab meat, mushroom, cellophane noodles, onion, 1/2 of shallot and garlic in a bowl. Add salt and pepper to taste.
Cut tomato in half. Remove the seeds and flesh by carving the inside out. Chop the flesh finely, put in a small bowl, add ketchup and mix well.
Stuff the tomatos with the stuffing.
Heat oil in a pan over high heat, place the tomatos in the oil, filling side down, Turn heat to medium, cook until brown. Turn over and cook for 3 more minutes. Take out. Drain the oil, leave about 1 t. in the pan. Put back on heat, add 1/2 garlic and shallot cook until brown. Pour the tomato flesh mixture in, stir well, add wine, salt, sugar and pepper to taste, cook until evaporate. Place tomatos back in the pan, cook for couple minutes. Turn off heat, sprinkle green onion and cilantro on top.

Thursday, March 24, 2005

Canh Khổ Qua Dồn Thịt

Stuffed Bitter Melon Soup

2 bitter melons, sliced in rings 1-inch thick
1/2 lb lean pork, minced
1/4 onion, minced
2 cloves garlic, minced
3 small wooden ear mushrooms, soaked and minced
1 ounce cellophane noodles , soaked and diced
1 T. fish sauce
salt to taste
fresh ground pepper
2 stalks green onion, diced
6 sprigs cilantro, diced

Mix ground pork, onion, garlic, mushroom and cellophane noodles well in a bowl, salt and pepper to taste.
Use a small spoon to scoop the seeds out of the melon rings. Stuff the pork mixture inside the rings.
Add water in a medium pot, bring to boil. Add the stuffed melon, bring back to boil. Skim off scum then reduce heat, simmer until soft about 15'. Add fish sauce and pepper to taste. Add onion and cilantro when served.

Nộm Nghêu Hoa Chuối

Banana Blossom Salad with clam

1 banana blossom, chiffonade
1 cup clam meat
1/2 red onion, thinly sliced
1/4 cup Thai basil, julianed
1 T fish sauce
1 t ginger, miced
1-2 clove garlic, minced
1 serrano chile, sliced
1 T sugar or to taste
1 T fresh squeezed lemon juice or to taste
1 T sesame seed, roasted

Remove the tough outer layer of the blossom, discard, along with the undeveloped baby bananas inside. Cut the blossom in half and start chiffonade from the tip. Toward the end, remove the baby bananas and chiffonade the rest. Soak babana blossom in lemon (or vinegar) cold water for 1-2 hrs. Drained.
In a small pot, boil water and cook the clam meats for 1-2 mins, drained.
In a large salad bowl, add clam meat, fish sauce, lemon juice, sugar, ginger, garlic, red onion and banana blossom, toss well.
Heat a small pan over medium, add sesame seeds. Stirr to ensure even roasting, until golden brown.
Add Thai basil, serrano chile. Sprinkle with sesame seeds, serve immediately.

Wednesday, March 23, 2005

Canh Măng Chua Giò Heo

Pig trotter with sour bamboo shoot soup

1 pig trotter, (pre-sliced in Asian market or you can ask your butcher to do it)
1 can of sour bamboo shoot, sliced
1/2 cup of rice paddy herb (ngò om), finely chopped
1 tablespoon fish sauce
1 tablespoon peanut oil
3 teaspoon sugar or to taste
3 cloves of garlic, minced
fresh ground pepper

Bring water to boil in a medium pot. Clean out pig trotter, shave any hair left on the skin, put in boiling water. Reduce heat, keep gently boiling without cover. Skim off any scum. Cook until it's nicely done, fork penetrates easily.
Wash bamboo shoot with warm water, drain well, add to the pot. Bring back to boil, add fish sauce and sugar, taste.
Fry garlic on a seperate pan until golden brown, pour onto the soup. Top the soup with rice paddy herb and some fresh ground pepper when served.

Cá Chim Chiên Dầu Hào

Crispy silver pomfret with oyster sauce

1 silver pomfret, cleaned with few deep cuts on the thick part of the fish
cooking oil
1 stalk green onion, thinly sliced
5 dried hot red peppers
1 tablespoon (T) oyster sauce
1 tablespoon (T) white wine
1 clove of garlic, minced
fresh ground black pepper

Deep fry the fish 6-8 minutes or until it's crispy, remove. Remove the oil.
Reheat the pan then add 1 T. oil, stir fry garlic, hot pepper until fragant. Add wine, oyster sauce. Stir until the liquid has almost evaporated.
Place fish on a dish, sprinkle with green onion. Pour the sauce over, served.

Tuesday, March 22, 2005

Gỏi Trứng Sam (Horseshoe Crab)

Roasted horseshoe crab eggs salad

Horseshoe crabs (called sam) in Vietnam mate for life. They have found that Vietnamese horseshoe crabs mate from June to August. That is why you often see them in pair, together, come to shore when it is a shiny full moon. While called "crabs", they are not true crabs but more closely related to spiders and scorpions. This ancient creature has been appearing over 350 million years on the earth, more than 100 million years before the dinosaurs. It can be considered one of the oldest living fossils. Each female horseshoe crab lays almost 90,000 rich-protein eggs in evening Spring tides during full moon.

1 female horseshoe crab
1 box of rice crakers or shrimp crackers
2 cup tender bamboo shoot, thinly shredded
1 cup carrot, thinly shredded
2/3 cup Vietnamese coriander leaves (rau răm), finely sliced
3 shallots, thinly sliced
1-2 cloves garlic, minced
2 tablespoons fish sauce
2 tablespoons fresh lime juice
sugar to taste
1 serrano chile, minced
fresh ground black pepper

Preheat the grill 10 minutes on high, reduce the heat to medium grill the crab for 10-12 minutes each side.
In a small bowl, stir together fish sauce, lime juice, sugar, garlic, chiles, shallot. Let stand.
In a larger bowl, combine bamboo shoot, carrot and herb. Pour the dressing over and toss well.
Place the crab on dish, open up to scoop the roasted eggs inside the shell. Put these delicous eggs on rice cracker and top with the bamboo shoot salad.

Thịt Đông

Pork's Trotter Cheese

It's usually made around Tet (New Year Festival) when the weather is cold, back then we didn't have refrigerator so the weather would help the mixture set.

1 lb pork's trotter or ham hock(fresh)
6 wooden ear mushrooms
1 tablespoon fish sauce
Salt and pepper to taste

Place trotter in a medium pot cover with water.(*) Bring to full boil then reduce heat to slow simmer. Skim off scum and keep adding boil water to keep meat covered. Cook until fork penetrates easily.
(*)Soak wooden ear mushroom in warm water for 30 minutes then put in the meat pot to cook for couple minutes, remove.
When the trotter's skin is nicely soft, place the trotter on dish to cool off, strain the stock to another pot, set aside. Remove all bones and fat, dice meat and skin to the strained stock bring to boil and reduce to simmer. Make sure the amount of stock is equal to the amount of meat. Add fish sauce, salt and pepper to taste.
Place each wooden ear mushroom in 6 small bowls, laddle the mixture on top, saran wrap and refrigerate until served. Slightly press on the mold, it will loose off easily.

Sunday, March 20, 2005

Tôm Bay (Flying Shrimps)

Pan Fried Grasshopper

2 cups grasshoppers
2 tablespoons peanut or vegetable oil
2 tablespoons vegetable broth
1/4 lime leaves, thinly sliced
1 meaty stalk fresh lemongrass, nicely chopped (optional)
1 teaspoon salt

Place a medium pot of water on to boil, add salt, bring back to the boil, immerse the "shrimps", bring to boil, drain, cool off, set aside, take off their wings. (Note: never wash or rinse them with cold water)
Heat a pan over high heat, add the oil. When the oil is hot (add lemongrass if used) add the shrimps and stir-fry, add the broth and cook until they turn golden brown. Add lime leaves, stir briefly then turn out onto a plate. Serve with drink as Tapas style.