Quick & Easy Vietnamese
75 Everyday Recipes
Publication Date: November 1, 2005
List Price: $19.95*
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"This snappy workhorse of a cookbook reveals the blend of tropical ingredients, delicate seasonings and French colonial influences that distinguish Vietnamese cooking and offers recipes easy enough to integrate into one's standard recipe roster. McDermott (Quick & Easy Thai ) begins with a primer on elements of Vietnamese cuisine: "Contrasts prevail," "soup is a mainstay" and "[m]eat often stands alone, minimally seasoned." She then revieweds the cuisine's central herbs (Asian basil, cilantro), starches (rice noodles, rice paper wrappers) and other foundations (chili-garlic sauce, coconut milk). Throughout, McDermott delivers the history and food information with a sureness indicative of the years she has spent in southeast Asia. Among the book's many notable dishes are Shaking Beef with Purple Onions and Watercress; Chicken Simmered in Caramel Sauce; Cha Ca Fish with Fresh Dill, Hanoi Style; and, for dessert, Sweet Coconut Ribbons, and Crme Caramel, which, McDermott explains, was adopted by the Vietnamese, who had long enjoyed their own version of steamed custard before the French arrived. Stunning color photographs by Caren Alpert illustrate the distinctiveness of Vietnamese cuisine. " -Publisher's Weekly