Wednesday, April 30, 2008

Culinary delights

A meal without vegetables is
a funeral without a horn
(Vietnamese saying)

The food in Vietnam has been absolutely fantastic. For around $3-$5 you can get a main course with meat; spring rolls are about $2. Vegies are purchased fresh from the market and rarely refrigerated before eating. Beef, chicken, duck, pork are the main meat fare.

You might like to try out the Red Bridge Fresh Spring Rolls for yourself...

Soak a cup of white rice overnight. Wash 3 times and drain.
Mix 1 cup of the rice with 2 cups fresh water and a pinch of salt.
Blend together for 7 mins and allow to sit for one hour.
3/4 fill a large pot/saucepan with water and cover top with white cotton (lawn), securing it with elastic. Cut a vent at one side around 2cm x 4 cm to allow steam to escape.
Bring water to boil.
Using a soup ladle pour a spoonful onto the lawn and gently spread the batter to form a circle.
Cover with a lid and steam for 1 min.
Using a flat bamboo stick, slide under the centre and lift the paper from the lawn.
Flip over onto a board/plate (sticky side up). Separate with lettuce or bamboo leaf
(these keep a few hours or can be dried in the sun)

100g peeled shrimps (prawns or other meat, or tofu)
2 pinches salt and sugar
10 medium lettuce leaves (asian)
1/2 cup grated carrot
1/2 cup grated green papaya (or green mango, bean sprouts, cucumber etc)
2 tsp white vinegar
1 tblsp finely chopped white onion
1 tsp vegetable oil
chopped fresh herbs - vietnamese basil, mint, coriander

WOK MIX - Pour vegetable oil into wokon medium heat; add onions and fry 30 secs. Add shrimp and one pinch of salt and sugar. Cook 1 minute more.
SALAD MIX - Mix remaining ingredients in a bowl (vegies, vingar, salt and sugar)

Place some vegetable and herb mix onto a sheet of rice paper.
Then place some wok mix on top.
Roll up tucking in edges as you go.
Slice into segments and serve with sauce of your choice.

Red Bridge cooking school - fresh spring rools

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