Vietnamese Cuisine Recipes

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White Asparagus and Tofu Recipe Recipe

White Asparagus and Tofu Recipe

08.25.14 by Jackie

This is the vegetarian meal I usually make when there is no fresh produce left in my refrigerator. I had lots of  errands today and grocery shopping was part of my to-do list, but I never had time to reach that one task before my husband Lulu and daughter Aria got back home for lunch. So I went on a scavenger hunt in the pantry to make a quick and easy recipe for lunch to please my husband's vegetarian diet.  

I prepared white asparagus tofu because, well, this is what was available in the pantry. I found a can of white asparagus spears, honey, vegetarian hoisin sauce and tofu. To enhance the flavor of the dish, I also added garlic, yellow onion wedges, black bean sauce and chili garlic sauce. 

I always stock my pantry with key ingredients in case of an emergency. My go-to tofu is the one that requires no refrigeration until the package is opened (shelf-table). I usually select the firm kind. Simply make sure the package mentions that there are no preservatives, that it is gluten-free (that's a good sign for its quality) and that it’s made with non-GMO soybeans. 


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Things I can't Live without: Fish Sauce Products Recipe
Here's another video featuring the ingredients I'm obsessed with and that are a must in my everyday cooking. Please note that this post is not sponsored; it's unbiased and features my 100% honest opinion. Today, I want to feature the brands of fish sauce that I use. I'm visiting my parents in France right now and I had anticipated preparing our favorite Vietnamese dish: phở bò. Of course making a dashing beef broth is key, but in my opinion, the finishing touch is as important; drizzling a bit of nuoc mam to enhance the noodle soup dish. So I carefully packed a bottle of my favorite nuoc mam in my luggage and gifted one to Maman and Papa.
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Black Mushroom Tofu Recipe Recipe

Black Mushroom Tofu Recipe

04.02.14 by Jackie

In Vietnamese, this tofu dish is called tàu hủ xào nấm đông cô. This particular variety of mushrooms is delicious. Once re-hydrated, they have a fleshy, plump and even meatier, chewier texture than fresh shiitake mushrooms.

The delicate part of this preparation lies in soaking the mushrooms. You could soak them in cold water overnight or, if pressed for time as I was, re-hydrate them in warm water for about 1 hour. I saved the flavor-packed soaking liquid and made a thick sauce to accompany the tofu. I don't prepare this dish very often because one of the ingredients can be a little pricey, but it is sooooo tasty!

In order not to serve a mostly colorless dish, I included bright green string beans. 


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Ca Kho Recipe: Vietnamese Braised Salmon in Caramel Sauce Recipe

Even though I live in a 9-person household, over the years baby Aria and I have become the only "omnivores". I don't know if her taste buds will change over time and she'll copy her father's vegetarian diet, but for now, Aria enjoys meat and seafood. Last evening, I prepared a typical Vietnamese meal for ourselves called "cá hồi kho nước dừa", which roughly translates to "braised salmon simmered in coconut water". As a cook and especially as a mom, I took such pleasure in watching her appreciate the meal I had prepared for her. 

The fish is cooked in a caramel sauce called "nước màu" ("colored water"), which is a "savory" sauce made of caramel where the boiling point of sugar was reached to add a brown color and to impart a slightly bitter aroma. The sauce is balanced with spicy, fresh red Thai chili peppers, ginger, nước mắm (fish sauce), whole mint leaves and green onions. My favorite way to serve this "cá kho" dish is with steamed jasmine rice and blanched Vietnamese leafy greens. It's a healthy, nutritious and complete meal. Baby Aria loved it and I'm sure you will, too. If you'd like to start with a more inexpensive fish, you could prepare the same dish with catfish or mackerel.


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Ghost Halloween Lemongrass and Ginger Beef Noodles Recipe

Boo! I have to admit I'm a little ashamed of today's Halloween-inspired meal. I prepared Vietnamese beef noodles (bún thịt bò xào xả gừng in Vietnamese) today and I had in mind that I'd be able to have fun with the rice noodles and create scary mummies. In the end, it looked neither like a mummy nor a ghost. As we were eating dinner, little Lala asked for 2 whole black peppercorns and found a solution to our mummy situation. Et voila! What do you think?

Cold beef noodle salads are very common in Vietnam and they are definitely a staple in my home. Sauteed beef in lemongrass is served with thick rice noodles and an abundance of Vietnamese greens. It might not be the creepiest meal for the Halloween season, but it sure is delicious. 


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