Pork and Pâté Banh Mi – Vietnamese Sandwich

Blue skies, cold running rivers, fresh bread and Mum’s abundant kitchen. Lucky enough to be taking in a quick weeks break with my parents and old friends in France it will no doubt be a squeeze to get back into my Lycra next week.

Life here seems to follow a strict regime of eat, sleep, repeat and although the food of L’ardeche is not as famed as that of Burgundy or Provence with mum in the kitchen we are not going to starve. Plump artichokes, wild boar stew, whiffy anduillette, charcutterie, pungent cheese and plenty of chestnuts have all been washed down with good, cheap wine, but with my friends arriving later today I will be taking over the apron strings.

French culinary influence is going to play a big part in the food I am eating in the coming months. Vietnam, Cambodia and Laos were under French rule from as early as the 18th century until 1954 and as well as colonizing the region for their own gains the French brought with them attributes of their own culture. And with the French being French this of course meant food!

Having spent a week cycling in Paris earlier this year, I enjoyed many an afternoon snack in the district of Bellvue. This run down (now quite trendy) corner of the city is home to the much of the capitals vast South East Asian population, and a supurb place to eat one of Vietnam’s most famous street foods, the Banh Mi.

Of all the dishes to result from the French influence on the Vietnamese culture, the banh mi sandwich is one of the tastiest. Using the baguette, pate and plenty of mayo borrowed from French cuisine, the addition of chilies, Thai basil and cilantro makes this decidedly Vietnamese fare and perfect food on the go. Ill be a spending a few days picnicking by the river this week and here is the recipe I’ll be putting together for my riverside Banh Mi.

makes four  sandwiches.

For a simple pickle.

For the meat

For the sandwich

1. Mix the vinegar, water, sugar and salt together in a small bowl. Add the carrot and daikon, mix well and set aside to marinate for half an hour. Drain well before using.

2. Now for the meat. In a large bowl, mix together the pork, shallots, garlic, chile peppers, sugar, fish sauce, lime juice, salt and pepper. Set aside to marinate for 15 minutes.

3. Heat some oil in your wok over medium flame. Remove the pork from its marinade and sauté quickly until just cooked through for about two minutes. Remove from heat.

4. Slice the baguettes open lengthwise, leaving one side of the bread as a hinge.

5. Spread the inside of the bread with mayo, layers of meat and pate. Then add the marinated carrot and daikon, cucumbers, dill, basil, chile and cilantro. Sprinkle with soy sauce and destroy!

photo to follow when home

This entry was posted on Monday, August 31st, 2009 at 08:19 and is filed under Food and Drink, Mekong Posts, Mekong Recipes, Recipes, Vietnamese Recipes. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed or trackback from your own site. You can leave a response, or trackback from your own site.

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