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Tuesday, February 12, 2013

If Martha Made Vietnamese {Peanut dipping sauce}

It has been a LONG while since I've posted a Viet recipe.  I've been making plenty of it, but with 5 years of learning how to make it, we've developed a long list of favorites, and I've just been re-making our faves.  If you're new here, the Viet recipes are all here.  I'm trying SO hard to add some Chinese dishes to our favorites list.  There's a new one I'm dying to try and just haven't had a moment.  Hopefully it'll be showing up here soon.  
Yes the kitchen was a wreck.  What's new.  
While preparing for our Chinese New Year's celebration (which is called Tết in VietNam so I now have to interchange between both terms here in our house confusing the bejeebeers out of everyone including myself) I came upon a shocking revelation... not quite earth shattering, but rather mind altering... especially to this simple mind.

For the 5 years I've been trying to learn to cook Vietnamese food, I've never once made the amazingly scrumptious peanut dipping sauce.  Not that we don't eat it... we eat it all the time, every time I cook Vietnamese food in fact.  But Sunny always makes it.  I didn't even have a recipe to try to make it!  Because she just kinda wings it.   Enough of that I thought!  What is my Viet cookbook going to be without a recipe for peanut dipping sauce for our spring rolls?  Unacceptable is what it was!  Whatever will I do when she leaves my nest?  Besides cry a river of tears that is.  What will I do to make dipping sauce for our spring rolls?
So I asked her to write it down for me.  To which she asked if she could just text it to me.  {Insert maternal shoulder shrug here.  The long lost art of WRITING is going the way of the great white whale just after the woolly mammoth, 8-track tapes, and Gilligan's Island.  Good golly I loved everything about Mary Ann and so hoped she and the professor would engage in a mutually committed relationship.  They would have had beautiful smart children, where as Ginger just would have gotten old and saggy.  I wanted to be Mary Ann and make many coconut cream pies!}


Where was I?

Oh ya, peanut dipping sauce.

So she texted me her recipe.

And here it is.
If you're looking for a little something Asian to celebrate the year of the water snake, try the spring rolls (recipe here) with this dipping sauce.  They are a hit with everyone who tries them, really pretty easy and fun to make, and the kiddos love love love to get their hands in the process and assemble them.  It's just a fun family activity that's easy to do and pretty good for you to eat!  We eat them with every Viet meal we make, and Livy has recently been making them to take in her school lunch.
Sunny does a LOT of this while she makes the sauce, getting just the right balance of flavors.  
Peanut Dipping Sauce (for spring rolls or also delish tossed in salads)

1 c of peanut butter  
juice of 1 lime  
2 T chili garlic sauce  
2 cloves of garlic-finely chopped 
2 T minced fresh ginger 
1 T soy sauce
2 T of fish sauce  
1/2 c of coconut milk   
3 T of hoisin sauce 
thin down with water as needed

Mince the garlic, ginger, very fine.  Combine all ingredients. (Use a blender to combine if you'd like.)  If it's too thick, add water till desired consistency.  


  1. Replies
    1. Please let me know how it turns out! We SO luv them with the sauce! Often the rolls turn out like bolbs from the younger kiddos. But that's okay too!

  2. Looks so delicious! We are following right back! I love your family! :) Blessings to you all!


  3. Sweet mercy that sounds amazing!!! Going to have to give that a try :)

  4. if ONLY I liked Peanut butter....(((sigh))). I guess too many PBJ's as a kid ruined me!

  5. Forget the recipe (wich seems delicious and makes me hungry!), look how amazingly gorgeous your big girl is!!!! She has that vintageish charm that I've only seen at the movie stars from the 60s. I just love that!! And she is so natural in front of the camera. And the glasses and pink flowers apron? Omg! <3 :P

    1. The glasses are a hoot! Totally for fashion's sake.

  6. It's amazing how the Asian cultures have come home isn't it? There's a kind of this from the Korean kitchens too!

    And as an aside - Livy the unstoppable can cook too? then again - why should I be surprised? ;)

    hugs - aus and co.

    1. But this is Sunny. People get them confused. But Livy can cook too! Helping out in the kitchen is requirement to growing up under my roof.


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