A cookbook devoted to the beloved Vietnamese sandwich, with 50 recipes ranging from classic fillings to innovative modern combinations.
Created by Vietnamese street vendors a century or so ago, banh mi is a twist on the French snack of pâté and bread that is as brilliant as it is addictive to eat. Who can resist the combination of crisp baguette, succulent filling, and toppings like tangy daikon and carrot pickles, thin chile slices, refreshing cucumber strips, and pungent cilantro sprigs? You’ll have ample opportunities to customize your sandwich with filling options such as grilled pork, roast chicken, and “the special”—a delectable combination of garlicky pork, liver pâté, and Vietnamese cold-cuts.
Opening a new realm of flavor for anyone tired of standard sandwich fare, The Banh Mi Handbook presents more than fifty recipes and numerous insights for crafting a wide range of sandwiches, from iconic classics to modern innovations, including:
Crispy Drunken Chicken
Shrimp in Caramel Sauce
Grilled Lemongrass Pork
Beef and Curry Sliders
Coconut Curry Tofu
Lettuce Wrap Banh Mi
Respected food writer Andrea Nguyen’s simple, delicious recipes for flavor-packed fillings, punchy homemade condiments, and crunchy, colorful pickled vegetables bring the very best of Vietnamese street food to your kitchen.
Nguyen, a Vietnamese-born San Francisco based food writer who has penned books on such Asian ingredients as tofu and dumplings, here offers a bite-sized exploration of banh mi, the cold cut sandwiches that are a street food favorite in Ho Chi Minh City. Over the course of nine chapters and 50 recipes, the sandwich is broken out into its basic components. Bread, of course, is half the battle, and Nguyen provides both a guide of what to look for when buying the perfect loaf, as well as a fast-rising recipe to create a baguette-like roll. Indeed, if there is a French sensibility to some of what is offered, it is due to the fact that, as explained in the introduction, France ruled Vietnam from 1883 to 1954. So, there is a classic mayonnaise, with Dijon mustard, in the sauces chapter and pork liver pate among the cold cuts. There are also tangy sauces like sriacha aioli and curiosities like silky sausage, which turns out to be a rather romantic name for a Viet bologna made of ground chicken or pork. There are plenty of hot sandwich fillings as well, some of which borrow from American comfort foods; notably, the lemongrass Sloppy Joe, seasoned with star anise, ginger, and fish sauce.