Pleasures of the Vietnamese Table: Recipes and Reminiscences from Vietnam's Best Market Kitchens, Street Cafes, and Home Cooks

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9780060192587: Pleasures of the Vietnamese Table: Recipes and Reminiscences from Vietnam's Best Market Kitchens, Street Cafes, and Home Cooks

A land of vibrant cultures and vivid contrasts, Vietnam is also home to some of the most delicious and intriguing food in the world. While its cooking traditions have been influenced by those of China, France, and even India, Vietnam has created a cuisine with a spirit and a flavor all its own.

Chef and restaurateur Mai Pham brings to life this diverse and exciting cooking in Pleasures of the Vietnamese Table. Born and raised in Saigon before emigrating to the United States, Mai has often returned to her native land to learn the secrets of authentic Vietnamese cooking, from family, friends, home cooks, street vendors, and master chefs. Traveling from region to region, she has gathered the simple, classic recipes that define Vietnamese food today: Green Mango Salad with Grilled Beef, Stir-Fried Chicken with Lemongrass and Chilies, Caramelized Garlic Shrimp, and especially pho, the country's beloved beef-and-noodle soup. With more than 100 recipes in all, Pleasures of the Vietnamese Table offers home cooks the chance to create and savor the traditional flavors of Vietnam in their own kitchen.

Filled with enchanting stories and stirring black-and-white photos of life in Vietnam, Pleasures of the Vietnamese Table provides a captivating taste of an enduring culture and its irresistible cuisine.

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Review:

When Mai Pham--chef and owner of the renowned Lemon Grass Restaurant in Sacramento, California--left her home and her grandmother in Saigon in 1975, just days before the city fell to communist rule, she never thought she'd see either again. Happily for her, she returned 20 years later to rediscover her roots and reconnect with her 100-year-old grandmother. Happily for us, she's written Pleasures of the Vietnamese Table, in which she shares that journey--and the vibrant cuisine of her homeland. She weaves a stirring tale of rediscovery; of visiting with cooks in market stalls and street cafés and home kitchens; and, perhaps most importantly, of rediscovering her "favorite food on earth," pho, the noodle soup often referred to as the national dish of Vietnam.

Pham begins with a chapter on dipping sauces, condiments, and herbs, which, she explains, are the true backbone of Vietnamese cooking. She explores culinary variations: the "rice bowl" of the southern peninsula and the French- and Indian-inspired foods of Saigon; the more robust style of the cooler central region of Hue; and the straightforward style of the mountainous north. And she shares the simple, classic recipes that define Vietnamese food. Green Mango Salad with Grilled Beef is at once salty (from the ubiquitous fish sauce), sweet from the fruit, and tangy and spicy from Chili-Lime Sauce. Ginger Chicken is bright with the flavor of ginger and spicy with dried chilies; caramel sauce adds body and an intriguing sweet and smoky element to the dish. And of course, one can't forget the beloved pho, which gets a whole chapter to itself. The traditional Hanoi-style Vietnamese "Pho" Rice Noodle Soup with Beef is fragrant with anise and ginger and thick with velvety noodles and delectably rare beef suspended in the hot broth.

Featured throughout the book are black-and-white photographs of the country and its people, stories of Pham's childhood, and enchanting tales of the history and people of Vietnam that, taken together, highlight a rich and vibrant picture of the ancient cuisine of this complex country. Helpful guides to the Vietnamese pantry and cooking techniques, along with a glossary, menu suggestions, and a list of resources for the more exotic ingredients make the book extremely useful to even the uninitiated. --Robin Donovan

About the Author:

Mai Pham was born in Vietnam and raised in both Vietnam and Thailand. Now chef and owner of the acclaimed Lemon Grass Restaurant in Sacramento, California, Mai is a food columnist for the San Francisco Chronicle, a frequent contributor to the Los Angeles Times, and a regular guest chef instructor at the Culinary Institute of America. She is also an owner of the popular La Bou Bakery and Cafe group in Northern California. Her first book, The Best of Vietnamese and Thai Cooking, was published in 1996.

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Book Description HarperCollins Publishers Inc, United States, 2001. Hardback. Book Condition: New. 236 x 190 mm. Language: English . Brand New Book. A land of vibrant cultures and vivid contrasts, Vietnam is also home to some of the most delicious and intriguing food in the world. While its cooking traditions have been influenced by those of China, France, and even India, Vietnam has created a cuisine with a spirit and a flavor all its own. Chef and restaurateur Mai Pham brings to life this diverse and exciting cooking in Pleasures of the Vietnamese Table. Born and raised in Saigon before emigrating to the United States, Mai has often returned to her native land to learn the secrets of authentic Vietnamese cooking, from family, friends, home cooks, street vendors, and master chefs. Traveling from region to region, she has gathered the simple, classic recipes that define Vietnamese food today: Green Mango Salad with Grilled Beef, Stir-Fried Chicken with Lemongrass and Chilies, Caramelized Garlic Shrimp, and especially pho, the country s beloved beef-and-noodle soup. With more than 100 recipes in all, Pleasures of the Vietnamese Table offers home cooks the chance to create and savor the traditional flavors of Vietnam in their own kitchen. Filled with enchanting stories and stirring black-and-white photos of life in Vietnam, Pleasures of the Vietnamese Table provides a captivating taste of an enduring culture and its irresistible cuisine. Bookseller Inventory # AAS9780060192587

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Book Description HarperCollins Publishers Inc, United States, 2001. Hardback. Book Condition: New. 236 x 190 mm. Language: English . Brand New Book. A land of vibrant cultures and vivid contrasts, Vietnam is also home to some of the most delicious and intriguing food in the world. While its cooking traditions have been influenced by those of China, France, and even India, Vietnam has created a cuisine with a spirit and a flavor all its own. Chef and restaurateur Mai Pham brings to life this diverse and exciting cooking in Pleasures of the Vietnamese Table. Born and raised in Saigon before emigrating to the United States, Mai has often returned to her native land to learn the secrets of authentic Vietnamese cooking, from family, friends, home cooks, street vendors, and master chefs. Traveling from region to region, she has gathered the simple, classic recipes that define Vietnamese food today: Green Mango Salad with Grilled Beef, Stir-Fried Chicken with Lemongrass and Chilies, Caramelized Garlic Shrimp, and especially pho, the country s beloved beef-and-noodle soup. With more than 100 recipes in all, Pleasures of the Vietnamese Table offers home cooks the chance to create and savor the traditional flavors of Vietnam in their own kitchen. Filled with enchanting stories and stirring black-and-white photos of life in Vietnam, Pleasures of the Vietnamese Table provides a captivating taste of an enduring culture and its irresistible cuisine. Bookseller Inventory # AAS9780060192587

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Book Description HarperCollins Publishers Inc. Hardback. Book Condition: new. BRAND NEW, Pleasures of the Vietnamese Table, Mai Pham, From Vietnamese markets, noodle shops and home kitchens, chef and restaurateur Mai Pham assembles delicious recipes, all capturing the fresh, exotic flavours of this vibrant land. Centring on the beloved national dish of pho, a richly layered broth of beef and rice noodle soup, this book also features such Vietnamese classics as Hue Chicken Salad, Sizzling Saigon Crepes and Seafood Stew with Lemongrass and Dill. All are authentic, accessible and easy to create. Filled with enchanting stories and photographs as well as an ingredient glossary and source guide, Pleasures of the Vietnamese Table is a delightful introduction to a distinctive cuisine. Bookseller Inventory # B9780060192587

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