Whenever I go to a Vietnamese restaurant, I always have the same dilemma. Should I order pho, a rice plate, or a vermicelli salad? Equally delicious in their own way, I have fallen in love with all three dishes. With spring bringing warmer days, I decided to make my own Vietnamese caramelized pork and vermicelli salad at home, because, well, why not?
**Helpful tips and common mistakes
Vietnamese vermicelli salads, also known as Bun Bo Xao, all have the same base ingredients but vary with toppings. Every salad comes with chopped greens, fresh herbs, thin rice vermicelli noodles and nuoc cham dressing on the side. However, you can mix it up with the proteins and enjoy the noodles with grilled pork, beef, and shrimp. Some restaurants even top the noodles with fried egg rolls, shrimp paste, and tofu.
This recipe has pork but you can substitute it for beef or chicken. I have tried preparing the pork on the stove, in the oven, and on the grill and have discovered that the grill is the best method. The high temperatures achieved by the grill allow the meat to caramelize in a way that other methods do not.
I decided to go extra fancy today and added the egg roll and some shrimp. You can choose to pair the salad with just noodles, greens, herbs, pickled carrots and daikon with the meat and it will be just as delicious. Don’t forget the finishing touch – the crumbled peanuts!
Just like all other Vietnamese dishes, this Vietnamese caramelized pork and vermicelli salad is a layer of flavors. Fresh ingredients are paired with savory pork and finished with a balanced sauce that brings together a lovely noodle salad. The best part? This dish is actually healthy!
For another favorite Vietnamese dish, check out my lemongrass steak banh mi with a fried egg!
Looking for someone to come to your house and prepare these dishes for you? It is possible! If you are in Los Angeles and looking for a private chef, please feel free to contact me. For more information, visit Private Kitchen Los Angeles.