This dish is a dichotomy with multi-layered flavors, something cuisine does so so well. It's warm and cool. It’s crunchy and soft. It's sweet and savory all at the same time. It is not difficult to make but it does take some time preparing.
I hope y'all enjoy it as much as we do!
Bún Thịt Nướng or Vietnamese Grilled Pork over Vermicelli Noodles
(Yes, I realize that is an extraordinarily large jug of honey. Must have been on sale...
or more likely Papa was doing the shopping!)
Marinade for the pork---
2 T brown sugar
4 T fish sauce
2 T honey
1 T soy sauce
1 t freshly ground black pepper
6 spring onions-white parts only, finely chopped
2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
In a large bowl, combine marinade. Add pork (1 - 1 1/2 lb Pork - shoulder, chops, pork neck...) and stir to coat all meat. Cover are refrigerate at least 45 minutes (up to 24 hours to get more flavor)
Stop for a brief moment and rub noses.
Sorry. I got a little distracted there. That happens. Often.
While pork is marinating, prepare lettuce, cucumber, nước chấm, and mint.
3 c fresh lettuce shredded (iceberg or Romaine)
1 cucumber, halved seeded and sliced
4 sprigs of fresh mint
1½ c nước chấm
Roasted chopped peanuts for garnish
A quick note about the nước chấm. It is SUPER easy and quick to make. Don't let this scare you off from this recipe! The recipe is here.
To prepare cucumbers, peel, slice in half, and use a spoon to remove seeds. Then slice. Be sure to wear dark glittery nail polish. It's part of the recipe, so you gotta do it!
Grill meat until a caramelized golden brown on each side (time depends on cut of meat, but don't overcook to avoid drying out the meat. Slice thinly across the grain.
To assemble-- In a bowl, place the cooked vermicelli noodles (cooled to room temp), about 3/4 c. lettuce, a small handful of cucumbers. Place the warm grilled pork on top of the bowl. Individually, each person will dress with their preferred amount of nước chấm, usually a few tablespoons. Garnish with roasted chopped peanuts.
PS-Does anyone think there is anything genetic about using chopsticks. This boy has been bound and determined to figure it out when ever they're around. And unlike us pasty white folk, he doesn't let hunger or failure tempt him into using a fork! In the end, he usually picks up a piece of meat, sticks it on the end of the chopstick, then brings it up to his mouth. Persistent little booger!