Beef Soup (pho bo)
Cuisines of Southeast Asia
by Gwenda L. Hyman. Published by Thomas Woll, Copyright 1993 by John Wiley & Sons, Inc.
Simmer beef broth, ginger, lemongrass, 3 shallots, and cinnamon stick for one hour. Strain and discard solids. Mix in fish sauce and set aside.
Partially freeze steak, then slice paper thin. Toss with remaining shallot and refrigerate until 30 minutes before ready to use. Arrange sliced chilies, bean sprouts, mint, cilantro, spinach, and lime quarters attractively on a platter. Put chili paste and hoisin sauce into two tiny serving bowls. Heat to a rolling boil about 3 quarts of water in a large saucepan, and add peanut oil. Drop rice sticks into boiling water, and as soon as water returns to the boil, drain, and place in a heated bowl. Separate them with a fork. Heat broth to boiling. Divide beef and shallots among four deep, warmed soup bowls. Pour on boiling stock (beef will be cooked in seconds). Divide rice sticks among the four bowls and serve immediately. Each person then mixes vegetable garnishes and sauces into their soups.
Makes 4 Servings
8 cups beef broth
4 slices of ginger, about 1 inch across
1 inner stalk of lemongrass
4 large shallots, thinly sliced
1/2 cinnamon stick
2 tablespoons fish sauce
12 oz beef steak
1/2 lb rice sticks, soaked 20 minutes in warm water and drained
1 tablespoon peanut oil
2 red chilies, seeded and sliced (use rubber gloves)
1/4 lb bean sprouts, trimmed
1/2 cup mint leaves
1/2 cup cilantro leaves
1/2 cup young spinach leaves, cut in thin strips
1 lime, cut in quarters
3 tablespoons chili paste with garlic
3 teaspoons hoisin sauce
Shrimp Crystal Spring Rolls (Bahn Cuon Tom Viet Nam)
by Paulette Do Van. Published by Chartwell Books, Copyright 1993 Quintet Publishing Limited.
To make the cold crispy pork, take the four slices of fresh boneless pork. Mix the honey, dry sherry, and chili powder thoroughly. Spread the mixture over the pork. Allow to rest for 1 hour or longer if possible.
Broil the pork slices until really crisp. Turn often so that they are evenly cooked. Allow to cool and cut into thin strips.
Make the dipping sauce by combining all the ingredients and mixing thoroughly.
Soak the rice vermicelli in boiled water, slightly cooled. When soft, drain thoroughly and leave to cool.
Place a clean tea towel on the surface you are working on. Dip single sheets of Banh Trang into warm water and place on the tea towel. They should be pliable and soft. Place some cold vermicelli, some shrimp, chicken, pork, pickled onion, pickles and carrot near the center of the Banh Trang but towards the bottom edge. Spread the filling out to a sausage shape. Roll the bottom edge of the Banh Trang up and tuck tightly under the mixture. Fold the left and right sides into the center and then continue rolling away from you. This roll will be transparent and allow you to see the mixture inside. Continue until the mixture is used up.
Place the cold, rolled, transparent spring rolls on a platter. Guests help themselves to lettuce leaves, one at a time. The roll is placed on the leaf and some mint and cilantro are added. The whole is rolled up and dipped in the dipping sauce.
6 ounces cooked crispy roast pork or 4 fresh boneless pork slices
3 tablespoons clear honey
2 tablespoons dry sherry
1 teaspoon chili powder
8 ounces rice vermicelli
1 pound fresh shrimp, cooked and halved
1 cup finely chopped cooked chicken
3 pickled onions, cut into fine strips
3 dill pickles, cut into fine strips
1 carrot, grated
1 package of round Banh Trang rice paper
1/2 cup Nuoc Mam sauce or Maggi liquid seasoning
1 red chili pepper, finely chopped
1 clove garlic, finely chopped
2-3 tablespoons lemon juice
2 teaspoons wine vinegar
2 teaspoons ginger wine
1 teaspoon sugar
1 butterhead lettuce
sprigs of cilantro
sprigs of mint
Green Papaya Salad (Goi Du Du)
Simple Art of Vietnamese Cooking
by Binh Duong and Marcia Kiesel. Published by Simon & Schuster, Copyright 1991 by Binh Duong and Marcia Kiesel.
Of the many types of papaya grown, the Vietnamese like to use the very large green variety in its unripe state as a salad vegetable - it is mild tasting and has a wonderful crunch. This salad is especially good with Shrimp Chips.
Prepare the Sour Lime Sauce and set aside. In a mortar, pound the chile and sugar to a paste. Stir in the lime pulp and pound gently to make a coarse sauce. Stir in the lime juice and fish sauce. Allow to sit at least 10 minutes before serving. The sauce will keep in the refrigerator for up to five days.
In a large bowl of ice water, soak the papaya to crisp it, about 10 minutes. Drain well.
In a medium saucepan of boiling water, simmer the pork over medium heat until cooked through, about 15 minutes. Drain and let cool slightly. Cut into long thin strips.
In a medium saucepan of boiling water, cook the shrimp over high heat for about a minute. Drain, cool, and cut in half lengthwise.
Put the papaya in a very large bowl. Add the pork, shrimp, and Sour Lime Sauce and toss. Put the salad on a large platter and sprinkle with the coriander and peanuts and optional rau ram (A pungent herb like coriander, but with its own unique taste, rau ram has narrow, pointed leaves and pale red stems.)Pass the chile sauce separately at the table.
Makes 8 Servings.
Sour Lime Sauce (see below)
1 1/2 pounds green papaya, split, seeded, peeled, and cut into long, thin strips
3/4 pound lean shoulder or loin of pork
1/2 pound medium shrimp, peeled and deveined
2 tablespoons chopped coriander
2 tablespoons chopped peanuts
2 tablespoons rau ram, optional (a mixture of half coriander and half mint makes a good substitute)
Sriracha chili sauce
Sour Lime Sauce (Nuoc Mam Chanh)
This is a sparkling citrusy sauce made with:
1 small red chile, chopped
3 tablespoons sugar
1 large lime, peeled and sectioned, any juice squeezed and reserved
2 1/2 tablespoons fish sauce. (Makes about 1/2 cup.)