the appetizer:

Vietnamese cuisine is divided into three regions: North, heavily influenced by China; South, more influenced by the French; and Central, spicier and more complex than cooking in the northern or southern regions of Vietnam. A typical meal might include roasted meat or fish, stir-fry vegetables, rice, soup, and fish and soy sauces.

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Bun Ho Rice Noodles  


Bun Ho (Beef with Fine Rice Noodles)

Rice and noodles are the pillars of Vietnamese cooking and each plays a different role in daily meals. Rice noodles are more popular than wheat ones and are thick, round, or flat. Unlike dry wheat noodles, those made with rice flour only require blanching in boiling water for a few minutes to cook. This dish is interesting in its multi-layered presentation and can be served warm or cold.

6 oz rice noodles
1 clove garlic, crushed
1 medium onion, sliced fine
2 inches of lemon grass root, thinly sliced
1 tsp salt
1 tsp black pepper
4 tbsp nuoc mam (fish sauce)
pinch of sugar
1 lb fillet or sirloin steak, thinly sliced
3 oz bean sprouts
4 oz crisp salad greens, shredded
3 tbsp shredded cucumber
1 small bunch mint
2 tbsp oil
4 tbsp chopped peanuts

Blanch rice noodles for 5 minutes, drain and set aside. Combine garlic, onion, lemon grass, salt, pepper, half the nuoc mam and sugar and marinade beef in this mixture for half an hour. Divide bean sprouts, salad greens, cucumber, and mint, put in individual deep bowls and top with rice noodles. Heat oil in skillet and fry beef to preferred taste. Divide into four and add to bowls. Dribble over with remaining nuoc mam, add chopped nuts, and serve.

A Little Vietnamese Cookbook
by Terry Tan
Illustrations by Sherry Tan
Chronicle Books
ISBN 0-8118-0799-1
Reprinted by permission.


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This page modified January 2007