July 3, 2013

Gourmet Vietnamese Recipes from Loose of Limits!

I think we told you how much we loved Hoi An, Vietnam. It was incredible. Beyond Hoi An, we loved all of Vietnam for a variety of reasons. Near the top of that list? We ate the.most.delicious food. You have no idea. It was amazing.

One of the best things we did in Vietnam was take a cooking class. One day, while biking to the beach, we were hungry and stopped at a random little roadside restaurant. Most of the restaurants in the region are family-owned and consist of a few tables in a sparsely decorated garage below an apartment. They mostly serve the same foods so, we considered ourselves incredibly lucky to stumble upon Red Dragon. It took ages for our food to come, but all was forgiven when we started eating. The food was incredible - a combination of old-style Vietnamese food with a modern flare. A good meal is so satisfying. It was the best meal we'd had in 8 months and we were so happy. Impulsively, we asked the chef if he would give us a cooking class and he said yes!

The next day, we made four tasty dishes and I wanted to share the recipes (and some pics) with you guys. Enjoy!

Nature's Beautiful Bounty!

Shrimp Topped Wontons
3 T Vegetable Oil, separated
8-10 Wonton Wrappers
4 Jumbo Shrimp
⅓ c White Onion, chopped
¼ Green Bell Pepper, chopped
1 Roma Tomato, chopped
½ c Pineapple, chopped
½ T Oyster Sauce
½ T Soy Sauce
½ t Black pepper
½ T Sugar
⅔ c Mango, chopped
⅓ c Asian Basil, chopped
¼ Lime, juiced

Heat 2T of vegetable oil in skillet until hot.

Drop wonton wrappers in the oil until lightly browned and crisp. Flip and repeat. Remove to paper-towel lined plate. Drain and cool.

Add 1T vegetable oil back to skillet. Add shrimp. When they begin to turn pink/orange, add onion and green peppers. Cook for 30 seconds. Then add tomato and pineapple. Stir. Add oyster sauce, soy sauce, black pepper and sugar. Stir. Remove from heat, add mango, basil, and lime juice. Serve warm, or warm through before serving.

Top the prepared wontons with shrimp mixture.

Crispy Rice Pancake
¾ -1 c Rice Flour
1 c Water
½ t Curry Powder
1 T Coconut Cream
1 t Fish Sauce
¾ T Green Onion
1 T Vegetable Oil
4 Large Shrimp
Bean sprouts
Mango, sliced
Cucumber, sliced
Thin Rice Paper

Begin by mixing ¾ c of rice flour with the water. Add curry powder and mix. Consistency should be that of whole milk. Add more rice flour or water as needed to achieve. Add coconut cream, fish sauce, green onion. Combine.

Add vegetable oil to nonstick skillet and heat. Pan should be very hot. Add shrimp to the pan, spacing them out across the pan. Pour batter to very thinly cover the bottom of the pan. Cook until golden brown and shrimp are cooked. Remove from heat.

Reheat before serving, add bean sprouts to the top of the pancake and fold over on itself. Service with fish sauce dressing (see recipe below), sliced mango, cucumber, lettuce, cilantro, mint, and rice paper. Dip in fish sauce dressing (recipe below).

Fish Sauce Dressing (for Rice Pancake dipping)
3.4 T Garlic, minced
1 T Lime Juice
1 T Fish Sauce
1 T Sugar
2T Water
¼ T Red Chili Pepper, chopped
1 T Shallot oil (see recipe)
Pinch True chili pepper (hot), finely diced

Mix all ingredients.

To Serve: Place pieces of the rice pancake, mango, cucumber, lettuce, cilantro, and mint in rice paper and roll. Dip into sauce.

Caramelized Pork Tenderloin
1 Pork Loin, fat trimmed
3 5” Pieces of Lemongrass, very finely chopped
½ T Ginger, peeled and minced
½ T Curry Powder
1 T Chinese 5 Spice
½ T Oyster Sauce
1 T Soy Sauce
½ T Fish Sauce
1 T Honey
1 T Toasted Sesame Oil
2 T Pineapple Juice
1 Red Chili Pepper, sliced
¼ t Black Pepper
2 T Green Onions, chopped
2 T Sesame Seeds

Combine lemongrass, ginger, curry powder, Chinese 5 spice, oyster sauce, soy sauce, fish sauce, honey, sesame oil, pineapple juice, chili pepper, and black pepper. Cut pork into 1.5” slices. Cover pork slices with marinade. Let sit for 10 minutes.

Preheat nonstick skillet until very hot. Add pork and cook about 3-4 minutes for each side. Scrape off burnt carmelized bits. Add the marinade sauce and green onions to the pan. Cook for 2-3 minutes more. Remove from heat. Add Sesame seeds. Garnish the pork (on the plate) with a spoonful of the pan sauce and a drizzle of shallot oil. Serve with white rice and spiced fruit salad (recipe below).

So good - I'm salivating looking at this photo!

Spiced Fruit Salad
1 Large Mango, diced
¼ Green Bell Pepper, chopped
3 Roma Tomatoes, seeded and chopped
½ White Onion (Medium), chopped
1 T Fish Sauce
½ T Garlic, minced
2 T Salad Oil (see recipe below)
¼ t Black Pepper
2 T Cilantro, chopped
¾ T Red Chili Pepper, chopped
1 Lime, juiced

Mix all ingredients.

Mango almost makes me believe in god

Salad Oil
4 T Vegetable Oil
4 Shallots, sliced

Heat oil in a pan. Wait for it to bubble and begin to smoke. When the smoke shows, add the shallots carefully. Lower the heat. When the shallots turn golden brown, remove the pan from the heat and let it cool.

Cashew and Sesame Crusted Sea Bass
1 Large Sea Bass Filet, with skin
1 ½ T Sesame Seeds
1 ½ T Salted Cashews, chopped
1 t Chinese 5 Spice
1 t Curry Powder
½ t Black Pepper
¼ t Sea Salt
3 T Vegetable Oil
3 T Red Pepper, slivered
2 T Cilantro, roughly chopped
2 T Passion Fruit

Preheat oven to 250C. Mix sesame seeds, cashews, Chinese 5 spice, and curry powder. Salt and pepper both sides of the fish. Place fish, flesh side down, in mixture to make a crust. Add oil to pan and heat until hot. Place the fish, skin-side down in the oil. Cook for 2-3 minutes. Flip and cook for 1-2 minutes. 

Be careful not to burn the nuts. Remove pan and place in oven for 10 minutes to cook through.

(Note: If you’re making more than 1 filet, you can cook these in the oven at low heat for a long time.)

To Plate: Pour 3 T sauce on the plate (recipe below) and top with the fish. Garnish with slivered red pepper, cilantro, and passion fruit. Serve with white rice and spiced fruit salad (recipe above).

Sauce for Fish
2 T Vegetable Oil
⅛ c Ginger, julienned
½ T Sugar
⅛ c Red Chili Pepper, sliced
1 ½ T Garlic, minced
½ T Curry powder
3 Passion Fruit, strained
½ T Fish Sauce
3 T Cilantro, chopped
½ c Green Onion, chopped

Add oil to skillet and heat. Coat ginger and red chili in sugar. Add to the oil and caramelize. Add garlic, curry powder, and passion fruit juice. Cook down. Add water, as needed, to thin the sauce. Remove from heat, add fish sauce, cilantro, and green onion. Spoon sauce over fish.

A few more food porn pics are below. You can check out all of our Hoi An pics here (including the rest of our cooking class photos). Enjoy!

The 3 Most Important Food Groups: Fish, Prawns, and Pork

Husband cooking? Sexy

It was like a cooking show, y'all. It was all laid out for us like I was Nigella and Tom was Bobby Flay. 

Cooking with chopsticks is an acquired skill. Luckily, I'm a quick learner!

You can check out all of our Hoi An pics here (including the rest of our cooking class photos).

1 comment:

  1. Yum, can't wait till you demonstrate this at our house!