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Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Vietnamese Dinner Party #1

Catfish + Bun + peanut sauce
Nuoc Cham

Made a couple of dishes: fried fish fillets with lemongrass, a quasi-Bun dish, a salad platter (lettuce, cherry tomatoes, cucumber, mint, basil), Nuoc Cham dipping sauce (recipe in the vietnamese crepes post), and peanut sauce (for spring rolls, which we didn't end up making; it was damn good regardless). So a bit disorganized and frantic, but pretty good. Oh, A&I brought egg rolls which were lovely.

Fried fish fillets with lemongrass:
the Little Saigon Cookbook, p. 108
3lbs catfish nuggets
1.5t salt
1.5 T sugar
1T chili paste
3T fish sauce
3T lime juice
1.5t black pepper
couple of stalks finely chopped lemongrass
garlic

You are supposed to marinate the fish with the salt and sugar overnight and then drain off the liquid. Alas I only had an hour. C'est la vie. Fry up garlic, add fish. Cook for 5 min or so. Mix up the rest of the ingredients and pour over. Cook till done. There was a bit too much liquid the night of the party, but leftover fish was excellent.
Quasi-Bun:
1 package rice noodles
leeks
garlic
chard stems
green beans
cilantro stems
chard leaves
cilantro leaves

I messed this one up by overcooking the noodles (you only have to boil them for a minute or two). Cooked the rest of the veggies in order, mixed with the noodles. Bueno with the nuoc cham poured on it and the peanut sauce. A proper Bun (Little Saigon, p.25) is cooked noodles and raw veggies, but whatever.

Peanut Sauce:
the Little Saigon Cookbook, p. 17
1T peanut oil
3 cloves garlic
1/2 c co-op ground peanut butter
couple of fresh chilies
3/4 c stock
1/3 c hoisin sauce
1t sugar
1t fish sauce
1/2 t cornstarch

fry garlic. turn off heat. mix in everything up to the cornstarch, stir till it is smooth. bring to a boil, then simmer for 5 min. Dissolve cornstarch in a little water, add, cook a little longer. You are supposed to garnish with some chopped peanuts.

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