Korean BBQ Beef Short Ribs

OMG – these are delicious. It was all I could do not to gobble down a lot more than I should! The marinade is quick and easy. I let it marinade a day, but I’m sure you could get away with less.

Mouth-watering. Literally mouthwatering.

  • 5 pounds Korean style beef short ribs*
  • 1 cup brown sugar, packed
  • 1 cup soy sauce
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 1/4 cup mirin (rice wine)
  • 1 small onion, peeled and finely grated
  • 1 small Asian pear, peeled and finely grated
  • 4 tablespoons minced garlic
  • 2 tablespoons dark sesame oil
  • 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
  • 2 green onions, thinly sliced (optional)
  1. Preparation: Sprinkle brown sugar over beef and mix well to evenly coat. Let sit at room temperature for 10 minutes while preparing marinade. In a bowl, whisk together remaining ingredients. Transfer beef into a large sealable freezer bag (you may need 2). Add marinade, press out excess air from bags, and seal. Turn bag over several times to ensure beef is evenly coated. Refrigerate for at least 4 hours but preferably overnight.
  2. Heat gas or charcoal grill to medium-hot. Drain excess marinade off beef. Grill short ribs, turning once, to desired doneness, about 3 to 4 minutes per side. Garnish with thinly sliced green onions, if desired. 
it was a pretty simple marinade, but absolutely delicious. Lucky for me – we still had some fresh asian apple pears and that is what I sued.

This recipe came off a Bobby Flay recipe on Food Network (who doesn’t love Bobby?) … but it is courtesy of his guest Judiann Woo.

Dan Dan Mian Noodles

There is something so comforting about a bowl of noodles. I’ve got a fabulous recipe for Tan Tan noodles on here, but this is slightly different – and an entire meal in one bowl. Get as adventurous as you like with the add ins.

  • 1/2 cup low sodium soy sauce
  • 1/4 cup hoisin sauce
  • 2 tbsp black bean sauce
  • 1 tbsp honey
  • 2 tbsp rice vinegar
  • 2 tbsp creamy peanut butter
  • 1 tbsp tahini
  • 1 small white onion
  • 2 tbsp ginger, minced
  • 2 tbsp garlic, minced
  • 3 cups chicken broth (use veg broth if you want to make this vegetarian)
  • 8 ounces egg noodles (Chinese style), rice noodles or Udon noodles
  • 2 cups fresh spinach
  • 3-4 baby bok choy
  • 2 cups fresh bean sprouts
  • 1/2 – 1 pound ground meat (I used pork but chicken would work well too)
  • 2 cups mushrooms, chopped (I used crimini but that is what was available, use whatever you can find)
  • black pepper
  • 1 medium shallot
  • 4 green onions, chopped

Garnish suggestions

  • sesame seeds, toasted
  • green onions, slivered
  • fresh bean sprouts

Typically, Dan Dan Mian is a spicy dish ….. however I’m not so good with extra spicy food. To make it more authentic, drizzle with chili oil when you are ready to serve. You can either buy one and have it to dress up many dishes, or make a quick, easy one that lives in the fridge for ages.

Chili Oil

Heat skillet over med heat – add:

  • 1/3 cup sesame oil
  • 6 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1-2 tbsp crushed red pepper flakes (depending on how spicy you like it)

Cook, stirring occasionally until garlic is fragrant – be careful not to burn it! Remove from heat and transfer to heat safe bowl or glass jar.

I got this recipe originally from http://www.halfbakedharvest.com – only tweaked it a bit for personal preferences. The chili oil is entirely hers.

Combine soy sauce, hoisin, black bean sauce, honey, vinegar, peanut butter & tahini. Stir well until smooth and creamy. (If the peanut butter and tahini are really cold it helps to heat up the mixture slightly). Add 1/3 cup water.

Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil and cook whatever noodles you have decided to use. Drain well and set aside.

In the same pot, add a little neutral oil and saute the onion, green onion, garlic and ginger until soft and fragrant. Add in 1/2 of your soy sauce mixture. Stir to completely mix it all in and heat up the sauce slightly. Add broth and bring just to a simmer.

In a shallow fry or sauce pan heat up a little neutral oil and add the ground meat. Allow to sit without stirring for a few minutes to help with carmelizing the meat. When mostly cooked, add the mushrooms and shallot. Cook until the mushrooms give up their moisture, and the pan dries out again. Add in the remaining soy sauce mixture. Stir to coat well. Allow the mixture to continue cooking until crispy bits appear. This is an important step as it adds a lot of texture as well as flavour to the finished dish.

Bring the pot of broth back to a higher heat and add in whatever vegetables you have decided to use. Make sure to add them in the right order so your don’t end up with limp veg – nothing sadder. I used bok chow and as soon as they were wilted but still crisp, I turned the heat off and added the spinach and bean sprouts.

Ladle noodles into the bowl and add your broth with vegetables. Scoop a generous amount of the meat mixture over top and garnish with the suggestions listed.

Turning this dish into a vegetarian meal would be so easy – omit the ground meat and use extra mushrooms in that step. Make sure to add extra fresh veg to make it a full meal.

Absolutely delicious!

Make sure to simmer until the meat & mushrooms dry out a bit, getting those lovely little bits of caramelization that add so much flavour and texture.

Add vegetables – as many as you want.

I like to keep fresh vegetables FRESH. I only add the spinach and bean sprouts when I remove it from the heat.

Serve with scallion pancakes for a total win!

The BEST meatballs!

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When you request spaghetti and meatballs at Nana’s house you better be prepared to make the meatballs!  Stella loves to, and we all agreed that they were the absolute best meatballs ever.  In fact, I had a hard time keeping enough left in the sauce to have dinner.  Tasters kept appearing in my kitchen …..

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This shows a double recipe, all measured exactly to what Stella feels is the perfect meatball size …. 38 grams.  If you aren’t in a hurry your kids are great at this!

  • 1 pound ground meat (I like a combo of beef and pork)
  • 1/2 cup panko-style breadcrumbs
  • 1/3 cup milk, any kind
  • 2 tablespoon finely chopped parsley, plus more to serve
  • 2 tablespoons finely grated parmesan or pecorino romano cheese, plus more to serve
  • 2 teaspoons coarse or kosher salt, divided
  • Red pepper flakes and/or freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon onion powder
  • 2 large eggs
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced

Place meat, crumbs, milk, parsley, cheese, 1 teaspoon salt, pepper, onion powder, eggs, and one-third of your minced garlic in a large bowl, and mash everything together with a fork or potato masher until evenly mixed. Using wet hands if needed, form mixture into 2-inch meatballs and arrange on prepared tray. Roast for 12 minutes, until cooked through (you can cut one in half).

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Ground beef and pork well mixed and ready for forming.

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Making sure each meatball is 38 grams takes time …..

Stella's meatballs

Almost 7 now, Stella likes to do it all, even if Nana’s freaking (quietly!) while she puts stuff in or takes it out of the oven.

From this point you can serve them however you like – we like them simmered in a tomato sauce just until heated through.  They are so soft and tender with just the right amount of seasoning.  I always make enough to freeze half for another dinner, for us that means doubling this recipe.

This recipe came from the amazing Deb at smitten kitchen.com, and she also lists her easy tomato sauce for simmering  … if you haven’t been to her website, or read any of her cookbooks, make sure you do!  Always delicious, and manageable for doing with kid helpers.

Coconut Prawn Curry

This sauce is incredibly good.  How, I wondered, did so much flavour show up in 25 minutes?

Garlic Herb Naan 3

I managed to get a few sprigs of cilantro on here for a photo, but it was ready so quickly, and smelled so heavenly there was no fancy plating for a photo!

I’ve made it with some jumbo prawns tonight but you could easily substitute any protein you like, or go straight vegetarian and you will be so glad you tried it.

SHRIMP & MARINADE

  • 1 lb extra large shrimp, peeled & deveined
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1/4 tsp freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 tbsp lemon juice (freshly squeezed please)

CURRY SAUCE

  • 1 tbsp coconut oil
  • 1 medium onion, finely chopped
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 tbsp fresh minced ginger
  • 1/2 tsp freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp turmeric powder
  • 2 tsp ground coriander
  • 1 tsp Madras curry powder
  • 1 can (14.5 ounce) diced fire roasted tomatoes
  • 1 can (13.5 ounce) coconut milk

cilantro for garnish

rice for serving

INSTRUCTIONS

  • In a small bowl toss the shrimp with the marinade ingredients. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for 10 minutes.
  • While the shrimp is marinating, heat the oil in a medium size skillet. To it add the onion, and cook for 2 or 3 minutes until the onion softens and becomes translucent. Stir in the garlic, ginger, pepper, salt, coriander, turmeric and curry powder. Cook for another minute.
  • Add the diced tomatoes with juices and all, the coconut milk, stir and bring to a boil. Cook for about 5 minutes stirring occasionally. Add the shrimp with the accumulated juices from the marinade and cook for another 2 minutes or until the shrimp is pink and cooked through.
  • Serve over hot rice and garnish with cilantro or parsley.

I’d say the only way you could be disappointed by this dish is if your spices are old.  They really aren’t meant to last forever just because they are dry!

Coconut curry 2

Get your prawns gently tossed in the marinade and put in the fridge until you are ready to add them to the curry sauce. (I used chili flakes rather than cayenne pepper today)

Coconut curry 3

Follow the instructions on how to build your flavour base – it really is important in many dishes, but I find especially so in Indian food.

Coconut curry 6

Coconut Curry 5

The next night we still had enough for another meal – so I lightly sauted some fresh vegetables in a sauce pan until just tender crisp.  Then add the sauce and heat only enough to warm through.  This keeps the individual flavour of your vegetables and doesn’t overcook either the remaining prawns or the curry sauce.

Make sure to serve these with Garlic Herb Naan – just what you need to sop up this inviting sauce.

These were my best naan ever!  So tender, with dough that is very easy to work with.  As an added bonus they freeze well so for nights when it is just the two of us I only cook half and freeze the other half …. ready for fresh frying when I am.

 

I have a lot of “authentic” food bloggers I follow for cooking dishes from India, Thailand, and Mexico just to name a few.  This recipe came from a fellow Canadian!  If you haven’t been to Jo’s website …..   http://www.jocooks.com then I recommend you do.  She has specific hints to make everything better, and is well worth a read.

 

Carne Asada

Missing Mexico right about now, so these Carne Asada tacos were just perfect!

Carne Asada 4

Carne Asada is one of those quintessential Mexican dishes …. pretty simple really, meat and a tortilla shell.  Make it exceptional by adding pickled onions and a fresh pico de gallo, and I promise – everything will look bright and cheerful!

Ingredients

  • 2 limes juiced
  • 4 cloves garlic crushed
  • 1/2 cup orange juice
  • 1 cup chopped fresh cilantro
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1/4 cup vegetable oil
  • 1 jalapeno minced
  • 2 tablespoons white vinegar
  • 2 pounds flank or skirt steak

Instructions

  • In a large resealable bag, combine lime juice, crushed garlic, orange juice, cilantro, salt, pepper, vegetable oil, jalapeno, and vinegar. Squeeze it around to mix it up.
  • Put the entire flank steak into the resealable bag. Seal it up tight. Make sure all the meat is exposed to the marinade, squishing the bag around to coat. Refrigerate for at least 2 hours, or overnight.
  • Heat an outdoor grill to high heat.
  • Remove the flank steak from the marinade, and discard excess marinade. Cook on the grill for 7 to 10 minutes per side.
  • Once done, remove from heat and let rest 10 minutes. Slice against the grain, and serve.

We love to serve this with fresh, homemade flour tortillas (my flour tortilla game is way stronger than my corn tortilla game ….. so far)

Carne Asada

You won’t believe it, but the rib eye steak was on sale, not the flank …. so that is what I used.  It was incredible.  All the citrus shows up in the marinade, and you can still taste it in the grilled steak, but it doesn’t overpower the meat.

Carne Asada 1

Grilled to perfection, moist and juicy inside – this steak is the best bite.  Just hope some gets to the table for the tortillas.

Carne Asada 2

Just look at how moist that steak looks.  Yum.

carne Asada 3

Place it all out on the table, and let the family make their own plates.  Smiles all around!

 

The “stay at home chef” adapted this recipe from one of my favourite chefs – Rick Bayless.  This is so easy to do at home and gives you the flavour you might expect from sitting in a Mexican cantina ….. not only that, it is easy!

Cambodian Lok Lak

Lok Lak is one of Cambodia’s national dishes, we fell in love with it during our trip this year.  The marinated beef is delicious on it’s own, but dipping in the lime pepper sauce accentuates everything.

Lok Lak 1

We are food geeks, it is true.  One of our trip highlights was visiting a pepper plantation in Kampot, home of the worlds best pepper.  La Plantation was incredible, and we loved seeing pepper being harvested by hand.  Of course you can use whatever pepper you have on hand, we just happened to bring it home with us.

Ingredients

  • lb beef steak , sliced
  • 3 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 4 scallions , chopped

Marinade

  • 3 tablespoons tomato sauce
  • 3 tablespoons soy sauce
  • 3 cloves garlic , chopped
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • 5 tablespoons fish sauce
  • ¼ teaspoon Kampot pepper
  • 2 tablespoons sugar
  • 3 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 1 teaspoon chicken broth powder
  • 2 teaspoons potato starch (or cornstarch)
  • 3 teaspoons paprika

Sauce

  • Juice of 5 limes
  • 3 tablespoons cold water
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • 2 cloves garlic , chopped
  • 2 teaspoons sugar
  • 1 tablespoon fish sauce
  • 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • ½ teaspoon Kampot pepper

Sides

  • A few leaves lettuce
  • 2 ​​tomatoes , sliced
  • Steamed white rice

Instructions

  1. Mix all the marinade ingredients in a salad bowl, add the meat and stir well.
  2. Marinate the meat for 1 hour in the refrigerator.
  3. Heat the 3 tablespoons of vegetable oil in a wok or pan and fry the chopped scallions over medium heat until they turn light brown.

  4. Add the meat, mix well and sauté for 5 to 10 minutes.
  5. In a bowl, stir all the ingredients of the lok lak sauce vigorously.
  6. Prepare large plates.
  7. In each plate, place a bed of lettuce leaves and a few slices of tomato.
  8. Place the meat on the lettuce leaves and sliced ​​tomatoes.
  9. Serve with steamed white rice.
  10. Place a small bowl of lok lak sauce on the side or the center of each plate.

Lok Lak 2

Crispy but tender beef, soft rice, and a lime pepper dipping sauce to brighten it all up.  In Vietnam it is often served with French fries, but we like the rice best.

I found this recipe on a website 196 Flavors, and it was just like the Lok Lak we enjoyed in Cambodia …. lick your plate good!

Lamb Barbacoa

lamb barbacoa 4

Pretty simply delicious.  Feels just like you are at a roadside stand or a local Mercado in Mexico.  Serve with a salad and dinner is ready.

I wasn’t really sure what I wanted to do with the pack of frozen lamb stew meat in my freezer …… This turned out to be perfect!  It helps that whenever we come home from Mexico we bring dried peppers so I always have a good stock on hand.  The only thing I didn’t have, in fact, was the agave leaf, or banana leaf.  I’m sure it will add another dimension of flavour when I try that, but honestly this was just fantastic without.

FOR THE LAMB

  • 12-inch chunk of an agave leaf (penca de maguey) or 1 large banana leaf, optional
  • tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 3 pounds boneless lamb shoulder (you could also use beef or pork – marinade works with either)
  • 12-ounce bottle of beer (optional but I love this!)
  • Salt

FOR THE MARINADE

  • 2 dried guajillo chiles, stemmed, seeded and torn into large pieces
  • 2 dried ancho chiles, stemmed, seeded and torn into large pieces
  • 3 garlic cloves, peeled and roughly chopped
  • tablespoon cider vinegar
  • tablespoon dark brown sugar
  • teaspoon salt
  • 1 canned chipotle in adobo sauce
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon, preferably Mexican canela
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried Mexican oregano

FOR SERVING

  • Your favorite hot sauce or salsa
  • A little chopped white onion or pickled red onions
  • A handful of cilantro leaves

This recipe came from Rick Bayless, and I have copied it here exactly as he posted it, but I’ve added my changes in the bold Italic font.

Roast the agave leaf being careful not to touch the exposed flesh of the agave) over an open flame, turning every few minutes until pliable and charred, 10 to 15 minutes, depending on the thickness.  (If using a banana leaf, run it briefly over an open flame to soften it.)  Cut into 3 pieces.  We are in the midst of Covid-19 pandemic, so I wasn’t about to run out to the store and try to buy agave leaf or banana leaf (the closest we can get to either of these is frozen banana leaf).  I just left this part out.

In the stovetop-safe insert of your slow cooker or in a very large (12-inch) skillet, heat the oil over medium-high.  Pat the lamb dry with a paper towel, sprinkle generously with salt and lay it in the insert of skillet.  Cook, turning occasionally, until richly brown on all sides, about 10 minutes.  Fit the insert into the machine or transfer the meat to the slow cooker.

Combine all the marinade ingredients in a blender with 2 cups of water and blend to a smooth puree.  Pour through a medium mesh strainer into the slow cooker. Nestle the pieces of agave leaf or banana leaf under and around the meat and pour the beer over the top, if you are using them.  Cover and turn on the slow cooker to high.  Your barbacoa  will be done in about 6 hours, though you can hold it for longer. (My slow-cooker can be programmed to switch from high after 6 hours to a “keep warm” temperature for up to another 6 hours. Some slow cookers click to “keep warm” automatically; others need to be switched manually.). I put the seasonings and the torn chile peppers into the blender along with hot water, and allowed it to sit for about 20 minutes before blending. This allowed the peppers to soften nicely and they blended up very smoothly.

Given that we are just “at home” these days, I didn’t use the slow cooker, but browned the meat well before adding it to a heavy cast iron dutch oven, covering with the marinade and slowly roasting at 275 for about 3 hours.  Honestly, I prefer this method most of the time anyway as it allows for the sauce to be richer.

lamb barbacoa 3

Just look at how rich that sauce is …. I don’t find the same result in a slow cooker.

When you are ready to serve, coarsely shred the lamb and arrange it on a warm platter.  Skim any fat from the sauce that remains in the slow cooker, then taste it.  If you feel it would be better with a more concentrated flavor, pour it into a medium saucepan or remove the insert and set it over high heat.  Boil for a few minutes to reduce that quantity, then taste and season with salt if it needs it. Spoon as much as you like over the lamb or beef.  (I like to sprinkle coarse salt over the meat at this point.)  Serve the barbacoa with the hot sauce or salsa, onion and cilantro.  Grab some tortillas, if you like, and you’re ready to make some delicious tacos.

lamb barbacoa 2

Needless to say, it isn’t necessary to make your own tortillas, but I love doing it.  I’m still struggling with getting my corn tortillas worthy of being a Mexican Abuela, but my flour tortilla game is strong!!  On Saturday mornings at one of our favourite mercados in Mexico City we have found the absolute B E S T pork carnitas.  This is the only spot we’ve ever seen this done, but they are making their tortillas loaded with herbs, so I tried that today.  Pretty successful, if I do say so myself.  I just kept adding herbs until it looked and smelled about right.

Lamb barbacoa 1

Most people come home from Mexico with decor, or tequila …… we bring home tortilla baskets, dried chile peppers and mezcal to make barbecue sauce.

Best Asian Noodle Soup

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This big beautiful bowl of soup is all you need for a great family dinner!

Can a person every have too many soup recipes???  I think not …. The best part of this recipe is that it is just a guideline for making an amazingly tasty soup out of whatever you have on hand.  The focus here is on the vegetables, so make sure you prepare way more than you think will fit in the pot!

The flavour base is what makes this soup such a keeper.

  • 3 scallions, cut in 3 large pieces
  • 1/2 inch knob of minced ginger
  • 3 tbsp oyster sauce
  • 6 cups chicken stock/vegetable stock/beef stock/6 inch piece of kombu

 

  • chicken breast/prawns/tofu
  • any amount of vegetables, as many as you think you can get in the pot
  • bean sprouts
  • cooked rice noodles or Chinese wheat noodles

Garnishes:

  • cilantro
  • green onion
  • sesame seeds
  • toasted sesame seeds
  • soy sauce
  • peanut sauce
  • chili oil

Start with a big pot, cover the bottom with a neutral oil and once it has heated up add about a 1/2 inch knob of minced ginger and 3-4 scallions (green onions).  Saute until they have generated a bit of colour and become nicely caramelized.  This is where you start, but from here the sky is the limit.

Add the oyster sauce and heat through, then add your broth.  If you are using the kombu, allow it to soften for at least 30 minutes.

When the broth is hot enough, add any protein you want to use – if using meat, slice it thinly.

Add the vegetables according to how long they take to cook – as in cabbage or bok choy will take a little longer than snap peas or thinly sliced sweet peppers.

I like to serve the noodles prepared and separate from the soup so people can add them as they wish, and that way they don’t get soggy.

This should all come together really quickly once the broth has heated – as in maybe 5 minutes!  When ready to serve stir in bean sprouts and serve with the garnishes so everybody can create the soup bowl of their own dreams.

noodle soup 1

Serve with a basket of crispy scallion pancakes for the perfect meal.

 

Korean Tacos

These Korean Beef tacos are incredibly delicious … who would have thought??  Just try them – as a bonus you won’t believe how quick and easy this is.

korean tacos 5

KOREAN BEEF

  • 2 tablespoons reduced sodium soy sauce
  • 2 tablespoons brown sugar
  • 1 teaspoon sesame oil
  • 1/4 teaspoon crushed red-pepper flakes
  • Pinch of ground ginger
  • 2 teaspoons vegetable oil
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 8 ounces ground beef

CARMELIZED KIMCHI

  • 2 teaspoons sesame oil
  • 1 cup chopped kimchi
  • 1 teaspoon sugar

SRIRACHA MAYONNAISE

  • 1/4 cup mayonnaise
  • 1 tablespoon Sriracha
  • 2 teaspoons freshly squeezed lime juice

TACO ASSEMBLY

  • 12 mini flour tortillas
  • 1/4 cup diced red onion
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro leaves
  • 1/4 teaspoon toasted sesame seeds

DIRECTIONS:

  1. KOREAN BEEF: In a small bowl, whisk together brown sugar, soy sauce, sesame oil, red pepper flakes and ginger.
  2. Heat vegetable oil in a large skillet over medium high heat. Add garlic and cook, stirring constantly, until fragrant, about 1 minute. Add ground beef and cook until browned, about 3-5 minutes, making sure to crumble the beef as it cooks; drain excess fat.
  3. Stir in soy sauce mixture until well combined, allowing to simmer until heated through, about 2 minutes; set aside.
  4. KIMCHI: Heat sesame oil in small skillet over medium high heat. Add kimchi and sugar, and cook, stirring constantly, until caramelized and heated through, about 3-5 minutes; set aside.
  5. SRIRACHA MAYONNAISE: In a small bowl, whisk together mayonnaise, Sriracha and lime juice; set aside.
  6. TACOS: Serve ground beef mixture in tortillas, topped with kimchi, red onion, cilantro and sesame seeds, drizzled with Sriracha mayonnaise.

Korean tacos 1

Kimchi is great, but have you ever had it like this?  Amazing what a little caramelization can do.

I used pork tonight but you can easily use beef, chicken or tofu – it’s the seasoning that will win you over.

korean tacos 4

Set everything out and assemble your tacos – serve with a tossed salad and dinner is quick, easy and fantastic.

I got this recipe from Damn Delicious – if you haven’t checked out her blog you definitely should, every recipe I’ve tried has been fantastic.

Vietnamese Rice Bowl

Vietnamese Bowl

Lime juice is used in so many dishes in Vietnam and Cambodia, and we loved it.  Tonight I sautéed the green vegetables with garlic and ginger, once tender I just squeezed fresh lime over and used a generous sprinkle of fresh Kampot pepper – they were so good and fresh.

We’ve just returned from a month in Cambodia and Vietnam and can’t seem to leave those fresh bright flavours behind us.  This rice bowl (or use rice noodles if you like) is delicious – use a variety of different textures and flavours to get the right balance, but whatever you use – make it your own.  The only actual recipe portion of this is the Vietnamese sauce, Nuoc Cham, the rest of it is more of a guideline.

You will need:

  • cooked rice
  • grilled steak (or chicken/prawns/tofu)
  • pickled fresh vegetables
  • sauteed vegetables (tonight I used broccoli, baby bok chow & snap peas)

Garnish:

  • toasted peanuts
  • slivered spring onions
  • rough chopped cilantro/basil/mint
  • toasted sesame seeds

Nuoc Cham Sauce:

  • 2 – 2/12 tbsp sugar (I used palm sugar but you can use white, or maple syrup or honey)
  • 3-4 tbsp fresh squeezed lime juice
  • 1/2 cup very warm water (warm helps the sugar to dissolve)
  • 2 tsp unseasoned rice vinegar
  • 3-4 tbsp fish sauce

Stir sugar and lime juice together, then add warm water and stir until sugar has dissolved.  Add rice vinegar and fish sauce.  I always start with the lesser amount of sugar, lime juice and fish sauce … adjust as needed when you have it all together.

To assemble, place your rice or rice noodles in the bottom of a bowl, then layer on your other ingredients.  Drizzle Nuoc Cham over and sprinkle with garnishes.  This dish is just as versatile as you want it to be.

Vietnamese noodle bowl 1

This time the Vietnamese bowl featured rice noodles and chicken.

Vietnamese noodle bowl 2

Quick pickled vegetables and Nuoc Cham sauce ready to dress up your bowl.

Vietnamese noodle bowl 3

Put everything out on the table and let everyone create their own bowl.

Vietnamese noodle bowl 4

Good to the last drop!