The Secrets Behind a Good Banh Mi
08 Jan 2016
There's no denying that the paste is what makes all the difference between having an incredible roll or just a hit-and-miss. Typically, the paste is the result of butter/mayonnaise mixed together with oil and egg yolks, which is how that creamy yellow colour and texture are both achieved.
Perhaps the secret really is behind the name as the bread part is formerly known in Vietnamese as ‘Banh Mi’, while you can also call this sandwich ‘Banh Mi Thit’ to mean bread and meat. Most traditional Vietnamese bakeries will sell crusty Banh Mi bread rolls, but as to whether or not you can find them, you’ll want to look for a bread type similar to the French Baguette in terms of having the same fluffiness - but instead, with a much thinner crust. Torta, cubano and kaiser rolls are worthy alternatives.
How you experience a specifically crispier taste and an overall lighter texture is from having bread made from both rice and normal flour. Keeping the insides light and fluffy is how you’re also able to fill your Banh Mi with a mixture of delicious meats, Asian herbs and soy fillings!
A flawless Banh Mi sandwich will embody fluctuating textures where layers of hot, cold, spicy, savoury and sweet intertwine for an enticing culmination. For spicing it up, you’ll need finely sliced and medium-hot chillies where jalapeños prove a popular choice.
Now for bringing out the warm and savoury, add Cilantro for a desirable pungent taste or other popular Asian herbs like fresh mint, coriander and Thai or Italian basil. Then, literally keep it as cool as a cucumber by adding this plant into the mix, ideal for balancing the assorted spice and stronger flavours in your Banh Mi.
And of course, it wouldn’t be Banh Mi without its signature pickled daikon and carrots which when combined with these other fillings, proves the perfect key for achieving palates of sweetness, pungency and crisp all in one.
It’s time to sauce it all up. For the final touch, use Maggi Seasoning for the essential salty and savoury add-on to a passionately stuffed sandwich. If you prefer something other than Maggi Seasoning, you can also use soy sauce or tamari but for whichever you choose, you’ll need to carefully complement your paste with this - and you’ve achieved one good Banh Mi.
And if you’re after the real deal, treat yourself to an authentic Banh Mi delicacy at your nearest Jarn Leva here alongside a fine range of Vietnamese Cuisine inspired by French influences.