Pork banh mi (Vietnamese baguette sandwich)

These sandwiches using vietnamese baguettes seem to be the latest craze in Melbourne.  The vietnamese baguette is essentially a french baguette that is made with a bit of rice flour so it is lighter on the inside and crunchier on the outside.  There are a range of options, but I made the ‘traditional’ version.

Banh mi

 

Ingredients

Vietnamese baguettes (or use french or other crusty bread roll)

Chicken liver pate

pork belly, sliced thin (recipe below)

Lebanese cucumber, sliced lengthwise

pickled daikon radish and carrot (recipe below)

coriander leaf (cilantro), roughly chopped

spring onion / chives, thinly sliced

hot red chiles, thinly sliced

mayonaise

Maggi seasoning (or light soy sauce)

pork belly

1-1.5 kg (2-3 lb) pork belly, skin removed

1 medium onion, cut in large chunks

half head of garlic, smashed

1 cinnamon stick (or piece of cassia bark)

3 whole star anise

1/4 cup brown sugar

1/4 cup rice wine vinegar

1/4 cup soy sauce

1 litre (4 cups) chicken stock

Mix all ingredients in a deep oven dish, immerse the pork belly, cover with baking paper, foil and/or lid, and bake in the oven at 160 C (325 F) for 2 h.  Remove from oven and let pork cool in liquid to room temperature.  Remove pork and cool in the fridge before thinly slicing.  If you want, slightly fry off the belly slices in a bit of oil before using.

pickled daikon radish and carrot

1 daikon radish

2-4 carrots, depending on size

180 ml (3/4 cup) rice wine or white wine vinegar

1/2 cup sugar

Heat the vinegar in a sauce pan and dissolve the sugar.  Remove from heat.  Cut the daikon and carrots into equal amounts of matchsticks and add to the pickle.  Marinate and chill for at least 2 h and up to a week.

 

Cut the baguette lengthwise (about 3/4 through, not in half), and fold open.  In order, first spread the chicken liver pate, then a layer of pork belly.  Add the cucumber, a handful of pickled daikon and carrot, then coriander (cilantro), spring onion / chives, and red chile.  Spread the mayonaise on the top half of the baguette, and add a bit of Maggi seasoning (or light soy sauce).  Enjoy!  After running out of chiles, I decided to replace the Maggi seasoning with Sriracha sauce.  Yum as well!

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