Eat Vietnam: three recipes, one feast

In case you hadn’t noticed, we’re big fans of Vietnamese food here at Peregrine (for evidence, have a look at a previous blog here). So here’s an easy little banquet for you to rustle up, all courtesy of clever Mr Luke Nguyen, whose cookbook The Songs of Sapa should come with a health warning about how addictive its recipes are. Happy eating!

Starter - Chargrilled Squid in Oyster Sauce

Main - Chicken cooked in ginger

Side dish - Green beans with oyster mushrooms and garlic

Starter – Chargrilled Squid in Oyster Sauce

2 tbsp rice wine

2 shallots, finely chopped

2 garlic cloves, finely chopped

2 tbsp oyster sauce

1 tbsp fish sauce

1 tbsp soft brown sugar

1 tsp sesame oil

500g squid, cleaned, tubes butterflied and scored on the inside, tentacles reserved

1 tsp toasted sesame seeds

2 tbsp chilli sauce

In a bowl, combine the rice wine, shallots, garlic, oyster sauce, fish sauce, brown sugar and sesame oil. Add the squid body and tentacles and toss to coat well, then cover the bowl and leave the mixture for half an hour.

Heat a BBQ grill or chargrill pan to high. Cook the scored side of the squid first for no more than 2 minutes, then turn and cook the other side for about 2 minutes, or until golden. Remove from the heat and chop into bite-size pieces. Garnish with sesame seeds and serve with chilli sauce for dipping.

Main – Chicken cooked in ginger

3 tbsp fish sauce
1 tsp oyster sauce
1 tbsp sugar
500g chicken, chopped into bite sized pieces
2 tbsp finely sliced ginger
2 tbsp vegetable oil
2 tbsp finely diced garlic
250ml chicken stock
4 spring onions (scallions), sliced into 4cm lengths
Black pepper
Jasmine rice, to serve

In a mixing bowl, combine fish sauce, oyster sauce, and sugar. Mix well then add the chicken and ginger, massaging the marinade into the flesh. Cover and place in the fridge to marinate for 20 minutes.

Bring a wok or saucepan to medium heat, then add oil and garlic, and cook until fragrant. Turn the heat to high, then add the chicken, sealing all sides. Cover the chicken with the stock, pour in the remaining marinade and bring to the boil. Skim off all impurities until clear and cover the pan. Reduce the heat to low and simmer for 15 minutes.

Add spring onions and black pepper, stir and cook for a further minute. Transfer to a serving bowl and serve with jasmine rice.

Side dish – Green beans with oyster mushrooms and garlic

200g green beans, cut into 5cm lengths
100g oyster mushrooms, torn in half
1 tbsp vegetable oil
2 garlic cloves, finely sliced
2 tsp light soy sauce
2 tsp sugar
1 tbsp oyster sauce
1 tsp sesame oil
½ tsp freshly ground pepper

Bring a large fry pan or wok to high heat, add vegetable oil and fry the garlic until fragrant. Add the green beans and stir fry for 2 minutes, add oyster mushrooms, soy sauce, oyster sauce, sugar and sesame oil. Toss for a further minute then transfer to a plate.


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Photo by E Bell

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