Vietnamese cuisine

Vietnamese cuisine reflects a multitude of cultures - Chinese, French, Indian, Indonesian, Dutch, Portuguese, and others.

Culinary Vietnam
Daniel Hoyer.
Layton, Utah : Gibbs Smith, c2009.
Vietnamese cuisine has developed over thousands of years with countless influences from other cultures. Full of authentic recipes, Culinary Vietnam teaches how the aspects of flavor, aroma, texture, color, contrast, balance, and even the sound a food makes should be taken into consideration in the planning of a Vietnamese meal. Author Daniel Hoyer opens the door into the world of Vietnamese cooking methods and theories, as well as to the background of the cuisine, and gives some historical and cultural tidbits, all while showing just the breadth of this simple, agriculturally based cuisine.
Vietnamese fusion : vegetarian cuisine
Chat Mingkwan.
Summertown, Tenn. : Book Pub., c2007.
Includes bibliographical references (p. 148-149) and index.
Into the Vietnamese kitchen : treasured foodways, modern flavors
Andrea Quynhgiao Nguyen ; foreword by Bruce Cost ; photography by Leigh Beisch.
Berkeley, CA : Ten Speed Press, c2006.
This landmark collection of more than 175 classic Vietnamese recipes, framed by stories of one family's home kitchen and a wealth of information on the regional cuisines, essential ingredients, and culinary traditions of the country is illustrated with more than 50 stunning color photographs.
Quick & easy Vietnamese : 75 everyday recipes
by Nancie McDermott ; photographs by Caren Alpert.
San Francisco : Chronicle Books, c2006.
  1. Map on inside front cover.
  2. Includes bibliographical references (p. 163) and index.

It is distinct from other Asian foods by its use of a unique variety of herbs, vine leaves, and aromatic grasses. Tasty sauces also compliment many of the exotic foods of Vietnamese cookery.

A Vietnamese meal can have a variety of tantalizing condiments. Discover items such as roasted rice powder, pulverized dried shrimp, and shredded salt-cooked pork. Added tastes of vinegar and sugar-brined vegetables, such as cauliflower and carrot pickles, catch the taste buds of hungry diners.

'In Vietnam you can find dishes found nowhere else in the world. On a traditional banquet table there will be dozens of such specialty dishes, pleasingly and elaborately presented. Some dishes are prepared from sea foods such as lobsters, fish, crabs and squids... which are abundant in Vietnam.'

(more from Nancy Freeman)

Spicy sauces are usually served with meals. A dipping sauce might combine garlic, chiles, lime juice, sugar, fish sauce, and sometimes ginger. A ginger sauce can be made spicy by just adding more chili peppers. Since the people of Vietnam depend on seafood as a major source of protein, their fish sauce, Nuoc mam, is a nutritious seasoning staple. These dipping sauces are used to unify and embellish assorted parts of a meal.

Shopping in Asian markets for various herbs can complement your cooking. The gentle fragrance from these different herbs helps create a wonderful dining experience.

  • Lemon grass
  • Fresh coriander
  • Asian basil
  • Bitter melon

These condiments along with fresh fruits, vegetables, and herbs that accompany the meal are usually so colorful that the Vietnamese plate nearly garnishes itself.

Article by: St. Louis Public Library staff