The Yin Yang of Vietnamese Cooking

From our cooking class in Hoi An, Vietnam, taught by Ms. Vy herself!

“Crispy, crunchy, chewy, silky, soft, sweet, sour, hot, bitter, salty.”

In rapid fire, Ms. Vy listed off the ten things that are needed to create a perfect Yin Yang balance or harmony in any Vietnamese dish.

This is what she strives for in every dish, and the result is a meal that is a totally sensory experience.

• Vietnamese Salad Rolls (aka Fresh Spring Rolls)
All the fillings are laid out ready to go. From the top left clockwise: crunchy julienned carrot and parsnip; cooked vermicelli noodles (silky a.k.a. slippery); Chinese chives; cooked prawns and slices of pork (chewy); a mass of fresh herbs that included cilantro, Thai basil, mint and a bitter herb. The dipping sauce continues the experience by containing, among other things, rice vinegar (sour), fish sauce (salty), sugar (sweet), and bird’s eye chiles (hot a.k.a. spicy). 
Making Salad Rolls in Our Vietnamese Cooking Class • The Famous Cau Lao Noodle & Pork Dish
Slices of chewy pork are placed on top of the (slippery) noodles, a small ladle of salty broth is added. The dish is topped with some crispy deep-fried ‘pillows’, coriander leaves, a slice of red (hot) chile and slivers of spring onion.
Cau Lao Noodles in Hoi An, Vietnam • Vietnamese Pancake, a Savoury Crepe-like Treat
The crispy pancakes are filled with herbs and meat and served with a sweet and spicy Vietnamese dipping sauce.Making Vietnamese PancakesMore of the Daily Post’s Weekly Photo Challenge: Harmony.

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