Banh Mi

Banh mi simply means bread, and you can usually find these Vietnamese sandwiches in the form of a baguette stuffed with all kinds of deliciousness.  At some places, like the Tin Drum chain of restaurants and some food trucks, the banh mi is referred to as a “Vietnamese taco” and is served on flatbread.  While baguettes are possible to make gluten-free, flatbread is quick, easy, and delicious.  The sweet and sour fresh pickled vegetables are the primary flavor note in this wrap, but the spicy peppers, fresh cilantro, and creamy mayo all add complex flavors and textures for a deliciously sharp, fresh, crunchy meal in a warm, filling wrap.

Find the recipe for the flatbread/roti here  (should open as a new page).

The best timing on this is to make the dough first so that it can rest in the fridge.  Then matchstick the veggies to give them time to pickle.  Then prep the rest of the filling ingredients.  The exception of course is if you’re slow-cooking some fancy pulled pork or something, in which case that obviously has to happen first.

Ingredient substitution:

If you can’t find daikon radishes, use half the amount of shredded red radishes and increase the carrots.
If you can’t find shisito peppers, which might be sold at an Asian grocery as sweet peppers, then you can substitute a combination of green bell pepper and jalapeno pepper to your desired spiciness.  Dice or shred the seeded jalapeno very small.

THE PICKLE

1/2 cup carrots, shredded or cut into matchsticks
1/2 cup daikon (white) radish, shredded or cut into matchsticks
1/4 cup red onion, shredded or cut into matchsticks
1/4 cup shishito peppers (sweet mild peppers) seeded, shredded or thin sliced
1/2 cup white or rice wine vinegar
1/2 cup water
1/4 cup white sugar

Boil the water, vinegar and sugar until sugar is completely dissolved.  Let cool (can quick-cool in fridge or freezer)
Pour over veggie mix, mix well, and let sit for at least 30 minutes.
Drain off liquid. Leftovers are good in fridge for up to 3 days

OTHER INGREDIENTS:  (All optional)
Chopped cilantro
lime juice
meat (chicken, beef, and pork are most common)
shredded or matchsticked cucumber
mayonnaise

A little meat, a lot of pickled vegetables, a smear of mayo, a handful of cilantro and a drizzle of lime gets you what you see in the photo.  But as this is a pretty versatile wrap, you could fill it with just about anything and be happy with the result.

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