Taste VietnamThe Morning Glory Cookbook | 0 Comments
The Morning Glory Cookbook
Memoirs & Recipes by Trinh Diem Vy
(Click the book to view it)
Celebrated chef and restaurateur, Trinh Diem Vy, announces the release of her new cookbook, “Taste Vietnam”.
The book presents not only a celebration of Vietnamese cuisine, but also a heart-warming, at times poignant, but often humorous account of her life growing up in the UNESCO World Heritage town of Hoi An. In it she recollects her life, from a childhood spent helping her mother in Hoi An’s bustling market to the opening of her own restaurants and beyond.
She shares her favourite family recipes and brings back to life recipes which were thought lost during the war years—a time of great hardship and turmoil—a time of scarcity and rationing. “Sustenance took priority over taste”, she recalls, “...effectively Vietnam lost an entire generation of cooks—recipes which were typically passed down from one generation to another were forgotten or lost”.
Vy goes on to explain the importance of harmony in Vietnamese cooking, of ‘yin’ and ‘yang’—the interplay of ingredients, the vital role played by fresh herbs—and also explores the unique flavours and textures so vital in creating the delightfully sensory experience that is authentic Vietnamese cuisine.
Taste Vietnam is the culmination of 30 years experience in the kitchen and as a teacher to thousands of cooking enthusiasts. It is a comprehensive cookbook with easy-to-follow recipes accompanied by vibrant photos.
In addition to the memoirs, anecdotes and recipes, the book includes sections on sourcing ingredients, preparation and cutting techniques, herbal remedies, fruit and vegetables, herbs and spices and a wealth of other useful information.
About the author:
Trinh Diem Vy was born and raised in Hoi An, Vietnam.
She is married with two children and currently owns several successful restaurants and a cooking school in Hoi An.
She is known as the local authority on Vietnamese cuisine and has acted as consultant to several world renowned chefs including: Gordon Ramsey; Luke Nguyen (Australian author of four cookbooks, proprietor of Red Lantern Restaurant, and host of a weekly TV cooking show); Tommy Tang (‘Godfather of Thai Cuisine’, author of numerous cookbooks and host of the TV series, ‘Let’s Get Cooking’); and Geoff Jansz (host of Australian TV show ‘What’s Cooking’).
Hôi An wonton soup with crab
This dish is one of my most famous—I learnt about it from my grandmother who loved to eat this dish made by a lady in the olden days. I went to the lady to learn the recipe and recreated it in my restaurant and it became very popular with my customers. The Chinese influence is obvious in this dish. The name wonton in Chinese characters means “cloud covering the moon”. This is a romantic, special dish that you should share with those you love.
8 wonton wrappers*, 10cm x 10cm
3 tblsp shrimp mousse (see page 237)
800ml pork stock
½ tblsp vegetable oil
½ tblsp white spring onion, pounded
½ tsp shallots, pounded
1/3 cup crab meat
¼ tsp sea salt
¼ tsp fish sauce
pinch of coarse black pepper
pinch of five spice
pinch of sugar
¼ cup coriander leaves
¼ cup spring onion curls
To make wontons, place a wonton wrapper on a flat surface, with the pointy side closest to you. Put a teaspoon of shrimp mousse just below the middle
and fold edge over, sealing it with some of the mixture. Then double fold along the edge over the mixture to make a wonton. In a small pot heat the pork stock. Heat a small frying pan, add oil, spring onion, shallots and crab meat. Sauté 1 minute. Add salt, fish sauce and pepper, stirring 1 minute. Add a pinch of five spice and sugar to the stock, bring to the boil then add wontons, crab mixture and simmer 2-3 minutes. Divide into 4 bowls, garnish with coriander leaves, spring onion curls and a few drops of sesame oil. Season to taste.
Serves 4 as a starter.
n.b. Thin egg noodles can be added to make a more filling soup.
* If this size of wonton wrapper is not available, use smaller size and make traditional wontons.
Fish in banana leaf
This dish was the dish that my grandmother (Mother’s mother) cooked the first time my parents met. My Father was so impressed with this dish, he ended up marrying my mother! I served this in my first restaurant and it has now become a popular item on most menus in Hoi An. Make it with passion!
150gr firm white fish (i.e. Spanish mackerel, 2cm cubes)
¼ tsp sea salt
½ tsp sugar
1 tsp fish sauce
1 tblsp fresh turmeric
1tblsp spring onions, sliced
1 tblsp wood ear mushrooms, sliced
2 tblsp glass noodles, soaked in cold water, 3 cm lengths
2 tblsp vegetable oil
1 hot red chilli, seeded and sliced, optional
6 pieces banana leaf 30cmx30cm for wrapping
In a bowl place fish, salt, sugar and fish sauce and mix well to combine. Add pounded turmeric, spring onions, mushroom, noodles, oil and chilli, stir well to combine. Place one banana leaf on a flat surface in a diamond shape; place the next one on top as a square. Put fish mixture in the middle. Fold pointed end closest to you over the middle, fold in both sides and then turn over so you have a square. Fold remaining 4 banana leaves in half and wrap around square fish parcel until all sides are covered. Put in a BBQ wire basket and char grill 10 minutes on each side until banana leaf is black. To serve, take off 4 folded banana leaves, then place a small plate on top of the square parcel. Turn over and unwrap, tucking edges under. Put the small plate on a larger plate to hold edges under.
Serve with steamed rice.
Serves 1-2 people per parcel.
Crispy white eggplant
This is a countryside dish that makes a typical vegetable look extravagant. The delicate cutting technique and cooking method are unique and the eggplant has a really meaty texture. It’s hard to believe it’s only a vegetable. This is one of my personal favourites!
4 round white eggplants (see page 235)
½ cup vegetable oil
2 tblsp white spring onions, sliced
1 tblsp shallots, pounded
1 cup green spring onions, sliced
1 tblsp mild red chilli and garlic, pounded
1 tsp fish sauce
2 tsp soya sauce
¼ tsp sugar
2 ½ litres water
3 tblsp sea salt
1 lemon or lime
few drops of white vinegar
Cut stems off eggplants then turn over. Slice eggplants thinly two thirds of the way through. Turn over, then turn clockwise 90 degrees and slice thinly halfway down until the slices meet each other and overlap by 1cm. Soak in 1.5 litres of water with 2 tblsp salt and juice of 1 lemon or lime. Place a heavy plate on top of the eggplants to keep them under the water. Soak 1 hour. Bring 1 litre of water to a rapid boil with 1 tblsp salt and a few drops of vinegar. Add eggplants. Boil for 8-10 minutes. Remove eggplants and put in cold water immediately. Place one eggplant on a small plate. Put another small plate on top. Press firmly in the direction of the slices to make a fan. Drain off all juices and pat dry. Repeat with remaining eggplants. Heat oil in a pan, shallow fry eggplants for 5 minutes on each side until golden and crispy, pressing down with a spatula to flatten. Drain well. Discard half the oil from the pan. Add white spring onions and shallots, cook 1 minute. Add green spring onions and fish sauce, stir for a further 30 seconds then turn off heat. Dissolve sugar in soya sauce in a small bowl. Drizzle eggplants with soya sauce, spring onion mixture and garnish with chilli and garlic mix.
Serves 4 as a side dish.