Bun Thit Nuong (Vietnamese Grilled Pork with Vermicelli)

Thit Nuong ( Vietnamese Grilled Pork with Lemongrass )
  • 1.5 lb pork butt or shoulder, thinly sliced just under 1/4 inch or so (not too thin as you do not want it to dry out when grilled. Ask your butcher to do this for you. Also, do not use lean pork as it will become dry.)
  • 1/4 cup minced Lemongrass (xa bam). Many Asian markets will sell minced lemongrass in the freezer section.
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 2 tbs fish sauce
  • 1 tbs ground pepper
  • 2-3 cloves garlic, minced. (use more according to taste)
  • 2-3 shallots, minced.
  • 3 tbs sesame oil
  • 2 tbs thick soy sauce (not regular soy sauce--has molasses, making it thicker and adding great color. If not available, can use caramel sauce. Both can be found at Asian groceries)
  • 3 tbs roasted sesame
Cut any large pieces of thinly sliced pork into roughly 2-3 inch strips. Again, not too small as you do not want it to dry out and also so that it doesn't fall through the grilling basket. For best results grill outdoors using a flexible grilling basket. Most Asian groceries will carry flexible square grill basket for only $3 as opposed to one found here at William and Sonoma for $40. You can probably guess which one we used.... :) Of course you can always use an indoor grill and that works almost just as well.

For the marinade, combine in large mixing bowl the lemongrass, shallots, garlic, sugar, fish sauce, pepper, dark soy sauce, sesame oil. Add pork and mix well and marinade for at least 1-2 hrs.

Spread out the meat loosely mesh and grill until nicely golden brown and slightly charred. To prevent from over drying since the meat is so thinly slice, keep lid on the grill. Remove from mesh basket into platter or bowl and toss with roasted sesame.

Bun Thit Nuong (Vermicelli with Grilled Pork)
  • 1 14oz. package of vermicelli
  • Thit nuong (above)
  • Fresh herbs: Mint (rau thom), Perilla (tia to), beansprouts (gia)
  • Cucumber, diced matchstick size
  • Lettuce, thinly chopped
  • Pickled carrots and daikons
  • Roasted peanuts, coarsely crushed
  • Scallion oil ( 2 tbs chop scallions and to that, add about 2 tbs of hot olive oil and pinch of sugar and salt)
  • Dipping fish sauce (nuoc mam cham)
Place vermicelli in boiling water for about 6-8 min, stirring regularly so it won't stick to the bottom of the pot. To check for doneness, take a strand and taste. Should be still slightly firm but easily breaks apart. Drain and flush with cold water to stop cooking process.

In large bowl, combine vermicelli with grilled pork (thit nuong) lots fresh herbs, cucumbers, beansprouts, pickled carrots and daikon, crushed roasted peanuts, scallion oil and dress with nuoc mam cham (dipping fish sauce).
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