Vietnamese cuisine is at the forefront of the World, both in terms of health and taste. Vietnamese food fever has not diminished this year either, with exotic seasoned, chili and fragrant foods becoming more and more popular all over the world.
When you look at the next photos, I am sure your stomach starts to squeak right away! It is worth to make this Vietnamese dish because it is not only nourishing but also very delicious!
We still know very little about this special Southeast Asian cuisine that uses fresh ingredients. Let’s learn more about Vietnamese flavors!
In addition to the Vietnamese Chicken Wrap, you can still find countless exciting Asian recipes by me. Click on the Asian Recipes tab!
Various Vietnamese Kitchen with Many Effects
Bordering China to the north, Laos to the west, Cambodia to the southwest, Vietnamese cuisine is at least as diverse as rich. The country was once part of the multi-country French colonial empire known as Indochina, a name that also explains which cuisines had a decisive influence on Vietnam.
The North-South dishes, which have been served in the northern part of the country since 1976, have a strong influence on Chinese dishes, while in the Central and Southern areas have an Indian influence mainly in the Khmer tradition. The French heritage is evident in the ubiquitous baguette, the establishment of coffee, but also in the cultivation of vegetables and their integration into Vietnamese cuisines, such as artichokes or asparagus, and among the green spices, dill can be listed here.
You can see this European imprint in the sophistication of the dishes, which are different from other countries of the region, not incidentally much less spicy. Although the exotic dishes of the Southeast Asian country are definitely very spicy for Europeans. But the authentic Vietnamese food is not so far from our taste in many cases.
The Three Pillars of Vietnamese Meals
If I have to highlight three important Vietnamese raw materials, rice, like the countries in the region, would certainly be number one. If only because rice is consumed very creatively in Vietnam.
It means rice with rice and even more rice!
Not simply as a side dish, or even as a main course, but they are used to make pasta, rice paper, and many specialties from rice. Rice is a major protagonist at every meal. In the old times, when it was good to have just a bowl of rice a day for the vast majority of the population, ingenious housewives learned quite well how to get the most out of it. In many poor areas, rice with only fish sauce or nouc mam is is still very common.
Nouc mam would successfully bid the second place in the imaginary top 3 list of the Vietnamese ingredients. This sauce plays an important role in almost all of the foods.
Fish is provided by the Gulf of Vietnam, which borders the country to the east, and the South China Sea, not only for the fish sauce but also for a wide variety of fish. Thanks to the lucky climatic conditions, there are almost innumerable exotic fruit and vegetable halls in Vietnam. However, unlike the surrounding countries, the diverse use of fresh herbs makes local dishes special. It is not surprising that, in summary, green spices are considered to be the third most important ingredient.
Characteristic Ingredients of Vietnamese Cuisine
Centuries of deprivation, but also the historical and political vicissitudes of the 20th century, can still be felt in Vietnamese eating habits. After a long time, in recent decades, the traditional and revived dishes of the country’s long-tradition (so-called mandarin) cuisine have come to the light again. Most Europeans have the opinion of the country’s culture and eating habits just from war movies (such as the American ‘Apocalypse Now’) or from romantic cinemas based on the works of the French writer Marguerite Duras, who spent her childhood here. Many of whom remember Catherine Deneuve ‘The Lover’), learnt about life there from these books.
The first breakthrough about the presentation of Vietnamese culture was brought by a 1993 film in both culinary and cultural experiences. As a result, more and more people around the world have also noticed Vietnamese gastronomy. And this was the film ‘The Smell of Green Papaya’, dreamed up by a Vietnamese director who emigrated to France and also screened in domestic cinemas.
Here, for example, one can see how one of the defining plants of Vietnamese cuisine, water spinach (called ong choy in Chinese cuisine). And the title green papaya is the unripe fruit of the extremely healthy fruit which is prepared as a vegetable, and when ripe, it is consumed as a fruit.
In addition to rice, vegetables, fish and seafood are arguably the most important factors in Vietnamese cuisine.
Herbs are often included in spring rolls, but they are good supplements for salads. They are almost always on the table. Many green herbs unknown to us. There are several varieties of basil, most commonly Thai basil.
In addition to the aforementioned dill, important herbs are lemongrass, mint, chives, or chives, the slightly spicy mustard grass we know, the red perilla grass with an anise aroma, or black pestle. The most characteristic is the herb with pointed green leaves (scientific name: polygonum odoratum), often referred to as Vietnamese coriander, which is very aromatic, slightly pungent. Of course, there is normal coriander and long-leaf coriander (eryngium foetidum). It is also included in the all-imaginative color palette of Vietnamese green spices.
You can feel the impact of Buddhism on food and the importance of consuming all across the country. While Vietnam is a true paradise for vegetarians, low-fat, vitamin- and fiber-rich vegetables, dishes aren’t exhausted in a variety of salads, a multitude of imaginative raw, steamed, fried and toasted dishes. Vegetables are often combined with fish and meat – and everything comes with some form of rice.
The most characteristic vegetables include those grown in Hungary, e.g. carrots, cauliflower, eggplant (or its special Vietnamese version), cabbage, cucumbers, zucchini, chili peppers, tomatoes, icicles, leeks. Among the rarely available from us are bok choy, somewhat similar to Chinese cabbage, the already mentioned water spinach or bitter melon, and many vegetables that are little known in Europe so far.
Soy in the form of beans, germ, and tofu is an important source of protein and a common ingredient in many Vietnamese dishes.
Among the meats, before the appearance of the French colonizers, the locals ate mostly chicken, duck, and pork, and later the line was expanded with beef dishes. Part of the truth is that many centuries of poverty and ingenuity are also reflected in the fact that meat-rich dishes are not the most common today.
The fish, which are abundant due to their location on the sea, more precisely on the bay, are all the more typical of Vietnamese cuisine. Among them, catfish, Vietnamese carp, squid, sea bass, tuna, and eel are regularly found on local menus in family kitchens – some even dried.
The importance of fish consumption cannot be overemphasized. Primarily, it comes to each family’s table in the form of fish sauce that defines the catch. The most important fish, if only in this respect, is sardine, which is undervalued in many parts of the world.
It is no exaggeration to say that nuoc mam made from salted, fermented sardines is as good in Vietnamese cuisine as soy sauce in Chinese. This is usually used instead of salt – poems and even songs were born about the Vietnamese fish sauce, which is also poetically called the perfume of food and is needed for almost everything. It is also available in supermarkets and Asian food stores. In addition to fish and fish sauce, seafood is still very often included in Vietnamese soups and main dishes.
Specific and Characteristic Catches in Vietnam
In a traditional Vietnamese meal, the dishes are not served in a row. But at the same time: colorful, fragrant food – with plenty of rice or rice noodles and vegetables. Meals are an important part of the culture, and it is no coincidence that the Vietnamese New Year, the seven-day Tet Festival, is the biggest feast, with different customs and traditions. In such cases, even the poorest will have plenty of good walls on their desks.
It is worth starting the acquaintance with Vietnamese cuisine at home, with a dish close to European taste, with a Vietnamese sandwich, more precisely the banh mi, which undeniably bears traces of French cuisine. It is based on a Vietnamese baguette that is significantly smaller than the French and is never completely cut in half. This then includes my spicy meat pate, mayonnaise, lots and lots of vegetables, partly fresh, partly pickled, sliced ham or fried or cooked meat. Nowadays it is also offered with cheese and circled boiled eggs. There are countless variations. Real hearty fast food.
Just imagine grilled chicken breast, crispy tortillas, and delicious vegetables. This is exactly the chicken wrap you have to taste! In addition to It is simple to prep(which everyone succeeds at), it has a surprisingly high protein content and a rich taste.
Ingredients: ( for 4 people)
Preparation time: 20 minutes
- ½ cucumbers cut in half lengthwise, pitted and sliced
- 1 small carrot grated
- 1 tbsp. red wine vinegar
- 2 tbsp. vegetable oil
- 8 chicken leg fillets cut into strips
- 2 cloves garlic finely chopped
- 25 g ginger (peeled) grated
- 3 tbsp. light brown sugar
- 2 tbsp. soy sauce
- 8 mini or 4 larger wheat flour tortillas (Chef’s Note: You can freely use whole grain tortillas)
- Picked into the leaves of 2 baby heart lettuce, the leaves cut in half
- Put the cucumber, carrot, and vinegar in a small bowl and set aside. Heat 1 tbsp. oil in a pan and fry the meat in it until golden brown. Take it out, set it aside. Pour the remaining oil into the pan and lower the temperature below. Put the garlic and ginger in the pan, fry for 2 minutes until softened but not browned. Sprinkle with sugar, pour in soy sauce and 150 ml of water, then cook in beads for 5 minutes until slightly thickened. Put the meat back in the pan and heat over the sauce.
- Heat the tortilla plates according to the instructions on the package, then distribute the salad first, then the chicken with the sauce, and finally the pickled cucumbers and carrots.
• 16 g fat (3 g saturated fat)
• 59 g carbohydrate
• 20 g sugar
• 5 g fiber
• 32 g protein
• 2.1 g salt
I hope you enjoy my Vietnamese chicken wrap recipe and you will recreate it. Don’t keep this delicious recipe just for yourself! Do not hesitate to share it with your friends as well!