Served on crunchy bread and piled high with ingredients, Spicy Tofu Banh Mi is a great sandwich to enjoy on a leisurely afternoon. Whether you spice it up or dial it down just a bit, this is a filling sandwich you can really wrap your hands around.
In the past few years, no other ethnic food has risen in popularity as dramatically as the Vietnamese sandwich.
Vietnamese delis have popped up all over the country, and at the heart of the hype is the popular bánh mì sandwich: a mouthwatering, messy layering of juicy pork, cucumber, and sweet and tangy do chua, a slaw made with pickled carrots and daikon radishes.
And the drooling doesn’t have to stop at your favorite Vietnamese deli. Now you can bring the sandwich craze to your kitchen with our yummy bánh mì recipe.
I had the good fortune of growing up within a 20-minute drive of Los Angeles' Little Saigon, where it was common to find freshly baked baguettes cradling perfect slices of barbecue pork or pâté to the tune of three for $5. I've always wanted to try making my own.
However, the gap between my cooking experience and dining experience with Vietnamese cuisine could not be further apart than New York and Saigon. So, when I set out to create my bánh mì, I knew that I could not hope to recreate an traditional version that would do those sandwich shops justice. I set out to create my own version.
This recipe aims to be easier and more accessible in terms of ingredients. Instead of barbecue pork or pâté, I used roast chicken (which I made myself, but can easily be substituted with store-bought rotisserie). And in place of the mysteriously addictive butter (MSG anyone?) with equally mysterious ingredients, I made a simple homemade mayo. And lastly mint — bánh mì aficionados might find this strange (I myself have never seen mint in bánh mì before) but mint in general is used often in Vietnamese cuisine, and I think it's a nice touch.
But, in the end, I think the most important thing is the bread. The bread still makes the sandwich, no matter what kind of sandwich it is. So make sure to find a truly excellent baguette that makes that crackling sound when you tear off a piece.
Click here to see 8 Tasty Lunch Ideas for Work.
A product of French colonialism in Vietnam, this ever so popular sandwich is the perfect combination of east and west. Ideal for a simple lunch or dinner, make the pickled vegetables and BBQ Pork ahead to save on time.
Vietnamese bánh mì sandwiches have become so trendy over the past five years that it's almost painful. It's gotten to the point when you see one on a menu that you know before ordering that it's best to stray far, far away from that portion of it. Besides, why order something out that you can make just as well if not better at home. There, I said it. You don't have to be Vietnamese to make a good bánh mì, and it's easy. The basic ingredients for a bánh mì sandwich? Steamed, pan-roasted, or oven-roasted meat and soy fillings like Vietnamese sausage, pork patties, pork liver pâté, and grilled chicken, topped with cucumber slices, cilantro, shredded pickled carrots and daikon, mayonnaise, sliced chiles, and chile sauce.
This simple recipe (really simple, I swear) combines two of the above ingredients — chicken (thigh meat) and chile sauce (Sriracha) — for a moist, flavorful effect. The key to great bánh mì? Moist meat. Adequate distribution. Overall moisture. And is just good bread with a thin crust and strategic layering technique for maximum ingredients and efficient distribution. This recipe was carried out using some really terrific bread baked by Leske's Bakery, a Bay Ridge, Brooklyn, original since 1961, and bought at Chubby Mary's, a new favorite sandwich shop by the Artichoke Basille crew in New York's East Village. What's the big deal about the bread? You don't need to go to Leske's or Chubby Mary's (though you could do much worse), but a really light and airy bread that's crusty outside and still moist and airy inside will be key. (Leske's would be great for a po'boy, too, by the way.)
Click here to see 7 Easy Sriracha Recipes.