Best thing that happened to me is that I soon realized it wasn't the dishes that weren't good, it was the restaurants that couldn't cook the dishes good. Now I am a big, huge, lust after fan of Vietnamese food. I can't live without it. After years of exploring food around our town, I've found the best places for certain dishes, and for Bun Tom Thit Nuong my favorite restaurant Banh Cuon Tay Ho, on Senter Road does it best. We have been going there for years and so often that I feel like they are a part of my extended family. The sad truth is that I actually see them more often than my real extended family. Isn't it the way it works?
They make the best for rice cake dishes too, but that's a discussion for another time. Today, we are going to attempt this dish at home, and here is the recipe for it:
1 package of vermicelli noodles
12 medium shrimp peeled and deveined,
but leave tail shells on.
18 ounces pork neck, finely sliced across the grain
into 1/8-inch thick pieces
3 lettuce leaves, sliced thinly
½ cucumber, cut into thin 1 inch strips
1 cup fresh bean sprouts
½ small carrot, peeled and cut into thin strips
2 tablespoons chopped cilantro leaves
2 tablespoons chopped mint leaves
2 tablespoons chopped perilla leaves
3 tablespoons roasted peanuts, coarsely ground
BBQ Shrimp Marinade:
1 teaspoon fish sauce
3 heavy dashes black pepper powder
A pinch of turmeric powder
2 tablespoons sugar
4 tablespoons fish sauce
1 tablespoon honey
1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
2 cloves garlic, finely diced
Cook the noodles according to the package instructions.
Rinse the noodles with cold water thoroughly,
drain in a colander and set aside.
Marinate the shrimp and the pork for 30 minutes.
Prepare and cut all the vegetables and herbs.
Grill the shrimp and meat.
Divide the rice sticks,
vegetables and herbs into 4 portions
and transfer them into 4 bowls.
The vegetables and herbs should sit on the
side of the noodles.
Transfer 3 shrimps into each serving,
Sprinkle some ground peanuts,
Spoon some nuoc cham (serving sauce)
into the noodles. Serve immediately.
¼ cup fish sauce
½ cup warm water
¼ cup sugar +
1 chile chopped (optional)
2 cloves of garlic minced
3 tablespoon lime juice
Add fish sauce, water, sugar
and lime juice in a small bowl
and mix well. Make sure the sugar is completely dissolved.