Today i went on a trip to the Vietnamese culinary delight that is Victoria St, Richmond. Getting there at 10:00am it was already packed with shoppers of all races and sizes, delving into the fresh, varied produce, unusual packed goods and bargains to be had. There were a few things on my to-buy list including Vietnamese coffee, ingredients for 3 color drink, good fish sauce, and pork belly. But the raison d'etre of the journey was one thing and one thing only: banh hoi.
Ever since i heard about these tasty noodle mats that you garnish with herbs and meat, and wrap up in lettuce, my mind has been consumed with them! And today, i experienced what is easily the tastiest Vietnamese food i have had yet. These are fun and easy to make, and being finger-like food, so easy to eat a LOT of.
Banh hoi refers to the noodle mats themselves, which are basically little sheets of very fine vermicelli noodles that have been kind of squished together. They are very light, and the noodles are very fine, so i am told that they are normally sold in fresh packages as they're fiddly to make. At only a couple of dollars for a large package, i was happy to pay for the fresh ones.
I don't pretend that this is a recipe so much as an assembly of ingredients.
- 1 package fresh banh hoi noodles
- 1 container roast pork (available at most vietnamese restaurants)
- 1 bunch holy basil
- 1 bunch vietnamese mint
- 1 bunch coriander
- 3 tbsp fish sauce
- 3 tbsp lemon juice
- 2 tsp sugar
- 1 small chilli, finely sliced
- 1 heat iceberg lettuce
MethodCombine the fish sauce, lemon juice, sugar and chilli and stir until the sugar is dissolved.
Break off all of the leaves of the herbs and wash and rinse them.
Seperate the leaves of the lettuce to form several small cups.
Cut the bbq pork into bite sizes chunks
Cut the banh hoi into small mats, around 10cm x 6cm and arrange on a plate.
Heat the banh hoi in a microwave on high for about 30 seconds or until warm. Note that in the above photo, the banh hoi are in 2 blocks of 3 mats (the mats should only be about 0.5cm thick)
Arrange all the other ingredients on a plate.
Let each person place one noodle mat in a piece of lettuce, followed by some roast pork, herbs and a drizzle of the sauce.
Eat, and eat, and eat until there's none left. And then make some more.
Follow with obligitory 4 colour drink. Yumm!!