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Posts tagged ‘fish sauce’

Brown Sugar Glazed Pork Spareribs

I have been MIA from the blogging world for a while.  It feels good to be back!  Today, I am making brown sugar glazed pork spareribs, one of Vu’s favorite dishes.  This dish brings me back to my undergraduate days at UC Davis when I was living with two other girls, Kc and L.  We would cook together, then gathered around the dinner table and enjoyed our creations while chatting about classes, college drama, and everything in between.  Kc, one of my closest friends, showed me how to make this dish.  It is definitely one of the simpler Vietnamese dishes but incredibly delicious.  The meat falls off the bone with a hint of sweetness while your olfactory bulb picks up the scent of the sesame oil.  Every since Kc taught me how to make this dish, I have cooked it on a monthly basis, if not more often. I hope you find these pork spareribs as satisfying as I did.

Ingredients

1 lb pork spareribs
1 tbsp sesame oil
1 ½ tbsp fish sauce
3 tbsp of brown sugar
Green onions for garnish

Instructions

Cut the pork into bite size pieces and boil on medium high heat for 20 minutes to soften the meat and remove any excess fat.

In a frying pan, add the sesame oil and turn on medium high heat.  Add the strained pork pieces and let them brown for about 5 minutes.  Add in the fish sauce and let the meat cook for another 5 minutes.

Add the brown sugar and let the meat caramelize for 10 minutes taking care not to burn them.

When ready to serve, garnish with green onions and enjoy it with rice.

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Chao Vit Vietnamese Duck Porridge

My stomach has been feeling funny for the past few days so I made chao vit, or duck porridge, for dinner.  Whenever I was not feeling well, my mom would make a huge pot of chao.  Chao is made with a duck based broth and rice, so simple yet satisfying.  The broth can be made from chicken, pork, or just water.  Many people cook the rice directly in the broth, but I strained the broth to remove all the fat, and then added in the rice to make a healthier soup.  I probably removed 2 cups of fat.  When paired with toasted gio chao quay (Chinese donuts), they soak up the soup and add a wonderful texture to the meal.  I added a handful of bean sprouts to my chao, squeezed a few drops of lime juice, and topped it with pepper, a few pieces of red chili, cilantro, and green onions.  The crunch of the bean sprouts, the sourness of the lime, and the kick from the chilies brought so many flavors to the chao.  It was a comforting and satisfying meal!

Ingredients

One 5-lb duck
10 cups of water
1 tbsp of salt
1 bulb of ginger, sliced
2 cups of cooked rice
2-3 tbsps fish sauce
Gio chao quay (Chinese donuts)
Pepper to taste
Bean sprouts
Lime wedges, red chili, cilantro, and onions for garnish
Nuoc mam cham (fish sauce) for the duck

Instructions

Place the whole duck in the pot filled with 10 cups of water.  Add the salt and ginger.  Bring the pot to a boil and let simmer on medium heat for 45 minutes.

Remove the duck from the broth and strain the broth to remove any excess fat.  Add the rice to the pot.  Use a hand blender, blend the rice until finely ground.  Continue cooking for another 30 minutes to let the porridge thicken.  Add in the fish sauce and season to your liking.

While you are waiting for the porridge to finish cooking, chop the duck into small pieces, prepare the fish sauce, and toast the Chinese donuts.

Add a few pieces of duck and a handful of bean sprouts before ladling the porridge to a serving bowl.  Garnish with green onions, cilantro, pepper, and red chillies.

Enjoy!

Nuoc Mam Cham Vietnamese Dipping Fish Sauce

Fish sauce is an essential staple of Vietnamese cuisine.  This flavorful dipping sauce is eaten with countless dishes such as bi cuon (pork rolls), egg rolls, banh xeo (Vietnamese crepes), many noodle dishes and drizzled over fried fish.  The chili and garlic add a huge kick to the sauce.  Without nuoc mam cham, the flavors of many dishes would fall flat.

Ingredients

1 cup warm water
¼ cup sugar
1/4 cup fish sauce
2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
1 teaspoon white vinegar
1 tsp of finely chopped chilies

Instruction

In a small bowl, whisk the water, sugar, and fish sauce.  Add the garlic, chilies, and vinegar to the fish sauce and stir well.  Store in a tightly sealed jar in the fridge up to two weeks.

Pho Bo Vietnamese Beef Noodle

Today, I am going back to my roots and sharing with you one of my all time favorite dishes, pho bo, or Vietnamese beef noodle.  Pho is a northern Vietnamese dish that has become well known worldwide.  Whether you are traveling in Asia, Australia, Europe, Canada, or America, you will likely find a restaurant with this wonderful soup.  If you can find a Vietnamese community, you can find a pho restaurant.  I grew up on pho, eating it for breakfast and lunch from the street vendors near my house.  And during the cold, rainy nights, it was the perfect soup for dinner.  My dad, a northerner, passed on his family recipe to my mom who came from south Vietnam.  Pho has a wonderful broth, flavored with star anise, Saigon cinnamon, charred onion, ginger, and many other spices.  The original recipe does not call for chicken stock, but my mom, who has more than 50 years of cooking experience under her belt, passed on her secret that one can of chicken stock adds even more flavor to the soup.  The daikon also adds a hint of sweetness lessening the amount of sugar needed.  Similar to many other Vietnamese noodle dishes, pho is served with lots of greens, mainly hung que (Thai basil) and ngo gai (which I do not know the English translation).  I also like the texture of bean sprouts in mine.  It adds a bit of crunch.  And of course, a bowl of pho is incomplete without the hoisin sauce and Sriracha!  People like to add brisket, tendon, tripe, and flank to their pho, but I enjoy mine with round steak and bo vien.  I am happy to share with you my mom’s recipe and hope it will send you in the right direction on your pho adventure.

Ingredients

A handful of spices (fennel, clove, coriander seeds, star anise, cinnamon)
1 large white onion
2 pieces of ginger, halved lengthwise
1 lb of daikon
1 tbsp of salt
2 lbs of beef bone
6 cups of water
1 can of chicken stock
¼ cup of fish sauce
3-4  tbsps of sugar
Rice noodles
1 lb of round steak cut in thin slices (ask your local butcher to prepare for you)
1 lb of meat balls  (bo vien from Kim Son)
Green onions and cilantro (cut in small pieces)
Bean sprouts
Hung que (basil leaves)
Ngo gai
Lime wedges
Hoisin and Sriracha sauces

Directions

Preheat the oven to 375˚F. Place the ginger, onion, and spices in the oven and broil for 10 minutes.

Clean the beef bones with warm water and place them in a large stockpot.  Add the daikon, ginger, onion, spices, salt, and water to the pot.  Cook on medium heat for  three to four hours.  Remove any scum.  Strain the broth and transfer to a clean stockpot.  Add the chicken stock, fish sauce, sugar to the new pot and adjust the seasoning to your liking.  Let it simmer for another hour.

To cook the rice noodle, in a clean pot, bring water to a boil.  Immerse the rice noodle in the boiling water for a few seconds so you do not overcook the noodle.

When ready to serve, place the bean sprouts and noodle in the bowl.  Place the steak and meat balls on top.  Add the hot broth to the bowl, and garnish with cilantro and green onion.

Serve with hung que, ngo gai, lime wedges, and condiments.

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