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Crab Noodle Soup (Bun Rieu)

So Much Goodness in One Bowl: Crab Noodle Soup (Bun Rieu) This hearty Crab Noodle Soup is a plethora of wonderful ingredients, flavors and textures–savory seafood patties are cooked in a light tomato stock with fried tofu and crab claws and then served over springy rice vermicelli along with abundant fresh herbs, beans sprouts and split water spinach stems. Don’t be daunted by all of the ingredients in this recipe. It’s fairly straightforward when broken down into smaller tasks. Some of the steps can be done in advance and I share some recipe shortcuts below. With the cooler days ahead, this is an amazingly warm and filling dish. Enjoy!

Notes on the Recipe, Tips and Tricks

My recipe does not use crab paste. Although tasty and a great shortcut, it is loaded with oil and contains artificial ingredients. If you prefer to use the crab paste, substitute it for the canned crab meat in this recipe.

Break up the work by prepping the day before:

  1. Pan-fry the tofu and store in the fridge.
  2. Wash the herbs and bean sprouts and store in the fridge.
  3. Split the water spinach and place in a bag filled with water and store in the fridge.
  4. Prepare the crab meat mixture and store in the fridge.

Water spinach may be difficult to find depending on where you live. A good substitute is young celery. Use a vegetable peeler to cut the celery into long strands like the water spinach.

Purchase fried tofu from your Asian grocery store to save some time and simply add to the soup.

I use tomato paste instead of annatto oil. If you have this ingredient, feel free to substitute. I love using paste because it adds delicious tomato-y flavor and the lovely color.

Once the meat floats to the top, be sure to reduce the heat. Over-boiling will cause the patties to fall apart. The soup should have nice chunks of meat.

This soup is not heavily salted so each person can add fish sauce and shrimp paste to taste.

Watch the video for instructions.

If you enjoyed this recipe, you make also like: Vermicelli Soup with Chicken, Steamed Pork Roll and Egg (Bun Thang) and Thick Noodles and Fish Cake Soup (Banh Canh Cha Ca).


8 oz medium-firm tofu
1/4 cup vegetable oil

Herbs  & Vegetables
8-10 sprigs spearmint
8-10 sprigs Perilla
8-10 sprigs Vietnamese balm
2 cups bean sprouts
20 water spinach stems + 1/4 tsp salt
2 garlic cloves
1 small shallot
6 medium tomatoes
2 green onions
6 sprigs cilantro

Crab Meat Mix
3/4 cup dried shrimp + 2 cups boiling water
1/3 lb ground pork
2-6 oz cans of crab meat, drained
3 large eggs
1 Tbsp fish sauce
1/4 ground black pepper

Sautéed Tomatoes
1 tsp vegetable oil
2 Tbsp tomato paste
1/8 tsp salt
1/8 ground black pepper

12 cups chicken stock
8-10 cooked crab claws
2 Tbsp fish sauce

10-12 cups cooked rice vermicelli (approximately 14 oz dry noodle)
2 limes cut into wedges
red chilies
shrimp paste


Cut the tofu into small chunks, approximately 10-12 pieces. Add vegetable oil into a wok and heat over Medium High heat until hot. Add the tofu and pan-fry all sides until golden brown. (Each side takes approximately 2-3 minutes.) Remove tofu and place on paper towels to blot the excess oil. Set aside for now.

Pluck and gently wash the spearmint, Perilla and Vietnamese balm. Dry the herbs using a salad spinner. Repeat the same steps for the bean sprouts. Store in the refrigerator until it’s time to serve.

Pluck the water spinach leaves from the stems. (Save the leaves for this dish: Stir-Fried Water Spinach and Beef (Rau Muong Xao Bo).) Wash the stems with cold water. Use a water spinach splitter to shred the stems into long strands. Fill a large bowl with cold water and add 1/4 tsp salt. Add the stems and soak in the water until it’s time to serve.

Mince the garlic and finely chop the shallots.

Cut the tomatoes into wedges.

Cut off the tops of the green onions and chop. Chop the cilantro. Combine both in a bowl and set aside for now.

Put the dried shrimp into a colander and rinse with cold water and then drain. Repeat this process one more time. Transfer into a bowl. Add 2 cups boiling water and let soak for 15 minutes. Drain the shrimp and reserve the liquid for later.

Add the shrimp into a food processor along with half of the minced garlic and chopped shallots. Process for 15-20 seconds. Add the ground pork, crab meat (drained of the canning liquid), eggs, fish sauce and ground black pepper. Pulse for 10 seconds to mix together.

Heat a small wok over Medium High heat and add vegetable oil. Add the remaining minced garlic and chopped shallots and stir-fry for 15 seconds. Add the tomato paste and stir-fry for another 15 seconds. Add half of the tomatoes and combine together. Cook until the tomatoes just start to soften, about 2-3 minutes. Turn-off the heat and add salt and ground black pepper.

Add the chicken stock plus the shrimp liquid into a large pot. Cover and bring to a boil over High heat. Add the sautéed tomatoes and combine together. Skim off any foam and discard. Add large spoonfuls of the crab meat mixture into the soup. Lower the heat to Medium High and cook until the meat floats to the top, approximately 5-6 minutes. Reduce the heat to Medium Low and cook for another 5 minutes.

Add the fried tofu, remaining tomatoes and cooked crab claws. Add 2 Tbsp fish sauce and gently combine.

To serve, place 2 1/2 cups rice vermicelli into a large bowl. Ladle the soup on top of the noodles and add a generous amount of broth.  Garnish the top with the chopped cilantro and green onions mix and freshly ground black pepper.

Serve the Crab Noodle Soup with a plate of the fresh herbs, bean sprouts, water spinach stems, lime wedges, chilies and shrimp paste.

Yields: 4-6 servings

Interested in learning more about fresh herbs? Check out this post: Quick Guide to Vietnamese Herbs

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Essential Herbs and Veggies to Serve with Crab Noodle Soup (Bun Rieu)

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Crispy Noodle and Beef Stir-Fry (Mi Xao Gion/Don)

Scrumptious Bird's Nest Crispy Noodle Stir-Fry--This is a Must-Try Dish | recipe from

In this scrumptious dish, thin egg noodles are transformed into crispy golden nests, piled high with savory stir-fried beef, shrimp and crunchy vegetables and then topped with a light gravy. The combination of crispy noodle and savory stir-fry is full of flavor, texture and simply mouth-watering. This dish is a restaurant favorite because it seems too complicated to make but that’s just not the case. The next time you get a hankering for this dish, do yourself a favor–skip the restaurant (and save some money), and showcase your culinary skills with this easy-to-follow recipe. Enjoy!

Notes on the Recipe, Tips and Tricks

You can vary the meat and vegetables depending on your preferences. Love seafood? Add scallops, crab and squid. Alternatively, use tofu, chicken or pork instead of beef.

What’s a nest without some eggs? I used the canned quail eggs for convenience. Optionally, hard-boil fresh quail eggs. If you can’t find quail eggs, use little fish balls and they’ll be just as tasty and appealing.

The fresh egg noodle that I am using comes in a 1 lb package consisting of 4 bundles. I divide each bundle in half and make a total of 8 nests. They are a hearty size and measure approximately 6-inches in diameter once fried.

The spider or skimmers I am using measure about 5-inches for the larger one, 2.5-inches for the smaller one. I bought these at my local Asian grocery store and similar spiders can be purchased online.

The oil should be approximately 380 degrees Fahrenheit (plus or minus 5 degrees is okay). Use a thermometer to check the temperature or test by dropping a section of noodle into the oil. The oil should bubble vigorously and the noodle should puff up right away indicating the oil is hot enough. It takes just 8-10 seconds to fry the noodles. Don’t over-fry or the noodles will be really oily.

If using dried egg noodles, boil first and air-dry for at least 1 hour. Then fry until crispy.

I prefer potato starch as a thickener as it yields a smooth and creamy gravy. It also doesn’t turn watery or into a thick glob when refrigerated. You can also use tapioca starch, corn starch or all-purpose flour. If you love gravy, I would recommend doubling the recipe.

Watch the video below for instructions.

If you enjoyed this recipe, you may also like: Stir-Fried Egg Noodles (Mi Xao Mem).


Beef and Marinade
3/4 lb thinly sliced beef
1 tsp soy sauce
1 tsp oyster sauce
1/2 tsp Vodka 5-Spice Marinade
1/2 tsp vegetable oil
1/4 tsp minced garlic
1/8 tsp ground black pepper
1/2 tsp vegetable oil for stir-frying

1/2 lb size 21-25 shrimp, peeled and deveined
1/8 tsp salt
1/8 tsp ground black pepper
1/2 tsp vegetable oil for stir-frying

Crispy Noodle/Bird’s Nests
1 lb thin egg noodle/wonton noodle
vegetable oil for deep-frying

1/4 cup chicken stock
1 Tbsp potato starch
2 cups chicken stock
1/2 Tbsp oyster sauce
1/8 tsp ground black pepper

Stir-Fry Sauce
1/4 cup chicken stock
1 Tbsp soy sauce
1 Tbsp oyster sauce
1/2 tsp sugar
1 tsp potato starch

12 oz broccoli crown
1 large red bell pepper
2 medium carrots
1/2 medium yellow onion
6 oz mushrooms
8 oz bok choy
8 oz baby corn
16 hard-boiled quail eggs
1/2 tsp vegetable oil for stir-frying
1/2 tsp minced garlic
1/4 cup water
1/2 tsp sesame oil
1/8 tsp ground black pepper


Combine the beef with soy sauce, oyster sauce, Vodka 5-Spice Marinade, vegetable oil, minced garlic and ground black pepper. Let marinate in the refrigerator.

Season the shrimp with salt and pepper and let marinate in the refrigerator.

Transfer the quail eggs into a strainer. Rinse with cool water to remove the brine and let drain.

Cut the broccoli into florets and then into bite-sized pieces. Trim and core the red bell pepper. Cut into bite-sized pieces. Cut the onion into chunks approximately the same size as the peppers. Peel the carrots and cut at a slight angle into coins about 1/4-inch thick. Separate the bok choy leaves from the stalk. Trim off the end of the bok choy stalks and discard. Cut the stalk into thin strips. Separate the mushrooms from the root. Transfer the baby corn into a strainer and rinse with water.

Take one bundle of noodle and gently loosen and separate the strands. Divide the noodle in half. Repeat the process with the remaining bundles making 8 batches.

Fill a medium wok about 2/3 full with vegetable oil. Heat the oil over Medium High heat until it’s approximately 380 degrees Fahrenheit.

Take the first noodle batch and arrange evenly in a large spider or skimmer.  Place a smaller spider on top.  Immerse the noodles in the hot oil and fry for 8-10 seconds or until they are puffy and golden. Transfer the nest to paper towels and allow to cool. Continue frying the remaining noodle batches, making a total of 8 nests.

To make the gravy, first prepare the thickener by mixing together 1/4 cup chicken stock and potato starch in a measuring cup. In a small saucepan over Medium heat, add 2 cups chicken stock and oyster sauce and whisk together combining well. When the stock starts to boil, stir the thickener again to remove any settling and then add slowly while stirring the stock. Continue whisking everything well. Add ground black pepper and combine. Cook for another 2-3 minutes. Turn-off the heat and set aside and let the sauce continue to thicken.

To make the stir-fry sauce, combine the chicken stock, soy sauce, oyster sauce, sugar and potato starch in a measuring cup.

Heat a large wok over Medium High heat and add 1/2 tsp vegetable oil. Add the marinated beef and stir-fry until the beef is slightly pink. Transfer to a clean bowl.

Clean the wok and again heat over Medium High heat. Add 1/2 tsp vegetable oil. Add the shrimp and stir-fry until it’s mostly cooked. Transfer to the same bowl as the beef.

Over Medium High heat, add 1/2 tsp vegetable oil into the wok. Add the minced garlic and stir-fry for 15 seconds. Add the broccoli along with the water and stir-fry for 2 minutes. Add the carrots and stir-fry for another 2 minutes. Add the red bell peppers and onions and stir-fry for another minute. If the vegetables are dry add 1-2 Tbsp water. Add the bok choy stems and baby corn and stir-fry for 1 minute. Add the bok choy leaves, mushrooms and quail eggs and toss together. Mix the stir-fry sauce and pour on the stir-fry. Toss together combining everything with the sauce.  Add the beef and shrimp, combine together and cook for another minute or so. Turn off the heat. Add the sesame oil, ground black pepper and toss together.

To assemble the dish, place one of the crispy noodle nests on a large plate. Fill the nest with the stir-fry piling it high. Drizzle a generous amount of the gravy on top of the stir-fry. Serve with a side of soy sauce and chopped chilies. Enjoy!

Yields: 8 servings

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Crispy nest of noodles loaded with savory stir-fried beef, shrimp and crunchy vegetables and then topped with a light gravy--Yum! | recipe from

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Sticky Rice Coated with Mung Bean (Xoi Vo)

Sticky Rice Coated with Mung Bean--awesome with some fried onions sprinkled on top! | recipe from

This recipe for Sticky Rice Coated with Mung Bean (Xoi Vo) is a guaranteed winner! What is better than enjoying plump grains of sweet rice infused with rich coconut milk, coated with ground mung bean and then steamed to a perfectly chewy texture? Oh yum! The indicator of success with this dish is to have separated grains of rice completely covered with ground mung bean so the rice is yellow rather than its original white. This may seem like a simple task but there are some key techniques to achieve just the right texture and taste. So before you start cooking, please review the video and my notes below.  Good luck and enjoy the recipe!

Notes on the Recipe, Tips and Tricks

I prefer short-grain sweet rice for this recipe. The short-grain or round sweet rice is visually appealing because it gets nice and plump when steamed and it’s also easier to keep these grains separated compared to the long-grain sweet rice.

Soaking the sweet rice is essential for achieving a chewy texture. If you’re short on time, you can soak with hot water for 4 hours. Soaking overnight is best and it doesn’t have to be exactly 8 hours. Anywhere between 8-12 hours is just fine.

The cooked mung bean needs to be finely ground so it’s powdery and flour-like. This texture will help the beans to bind to and coat the sweet rice. Process the mung bean in intervals of 10 seconds, stop the food processor to stir the beans and then continue processing.

When steaming, use the steamer tray with the smaller holes. If your steamer tray has the larger holes, line it with cheesecloth or banana leaves.

Add more coconut milk syrup during steaming if you like it richer but don’t add so much that the rice becomes soggy. Alternatively, you can save the coconut milk syrup and drizzle some on top when serving.

Keep the water level in the steamer basin low–fill just 1/4 of the steamer basin with water. Too much steam will make the sweet rice and beans very sticky.

It’s important to wrap the steamer lid with a kitchen towel to remove any excess moisture. Some lids collect water which then drips down making everything soggy. Using a towel takes care of this, so don’t skip this step.

Refrigerate any leftovers and enjoy within the week.

This dish freezes really well (up to 3 months).  Store in resealable plastic bags or air-tight containers. To reheat, microwave on High for 90 seconds. This makes an awesome and fast breakfast!

Watch the video below for instructions.

If you enjoyed this recipe, you may also like:  Quick Sticky Rice and Mung Bean (Xoi Xeo) and Sticky Rice and Hominy (Xoi Bap).


3 cups short grain sweet rice (also called glutinous or sticky rice)
1 1/4 cup peeled split mung bean
14 oz coconut milk
14 oz water
3/4 tsp salt
1 1/2 Tbsp sugar


Put the sweet rice into a large bowl. Fill the bowl with cool water and then wash the rice by swishing in the water for 30 seconds. Pour out the rinse water. Repeat the washing process one more time.  Fill the bowl with cool water and let the rice soak for at least 8 hours or overnight.

Put the mung bean into a medium bowl. Fill the bowl with cool water and then wash the beans by swishing in the water for 30 seconds. Pour out the rinse water. Repeat the washing process two more times. Fill the bowl with cool water and let the mung bean soak for at least 8 hours or overnight.

Pour out the water from the beans and rinse again with cool water. Transfer into a colander and toss the beans in the colander to remove any remaining water. Set aside and allow to air-dry while continuing with the next steps.

Pour out the water from the rice. Gently rinse one more time and then drain well. Add the coconut milk and water and combine together with the rice. Allow to rest for 2 hours.

Fill 1/4 of steamer basin with water. Bring to a rapid boil over High heat and then reduce to Medium.

Add 1/4 tsp salt to the beans and combine together. Transfer the mung bean into a steamer tray and spread out into a thin and even layer. Steam for 20 minutes or until the beans are soft and can be easily mashed. Allow to cool for 15 minutes.

Transfer the beans to food processor and grind until fine, approximately 2-3 minutes.

Pour the sweet rice mixture into a colander and reserve the coconut milk. Stir the rice a few times and allow to drain for 10 minutes.

Measure out 1/2 cup coconut milk mixture. Add the sugar and stir until dissolved.

Transfer the drained sweet rice into a large bowl. Add half the ground mung bean and combine well. Add the remaining mung bean and 1/2 tsp salt. Combine together well.

Fill 1/4 of the steamer basin with water. Bring to a rapid boil over High heat and then reduce to Medium.

Transfer half (approximately 4 1/2 cups) of the sweet rice and mung bean mixture to the steamer tray. Spread out into a thin and even layer. Steam for 8 minutes.

Drizzle 6 tsp coconut milk mixture onto the sweet rice and mung bean. Combine together. Steam for 8 minutes.

Drizzle 6 tsp coconut milk mixture onto the sweet rice and mung bean. Combine together. Steam for 4 minutes.

Transfer to a large baking pan and spread out evenly. Use chopsticks to break up any larger chunks. When cool enough to handle, massage the rice using your fingers to separate the grains.

Repeat the same steps as above to make the second batch.

Enjoy the Sticky Rice Coated with Mung Bean at room temperature. Serve with Steamed Pork Roll for a delicious meal!

Yields: 6-10 servings, 10 cups

Love sticky rice and want more recipes?  Check out: Sticky Rice Cakes with Star Anise (Xoi Vi) and Savory Sticky Rice (Xoi Man)

The perfect duo: Sticky Rice coated with Mung Bean and served with Steamed Pork Roll | recipe from

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Enjoy Sticky Rice Coated with Mung Bean anytime, just store in snack bags and freeze...| recipe from runawayrice.comI made a double batch, one to enjoy now and one to freeze for later.  I divide the batch for the freezer using these single-serving snack bags.  To reheat, simply warm in the microwave for 90 seconds.

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Pressure Cooker Pho Ga/Vietnamese Chicken Noodle Soup

Made this awesome popular noodle soup in a pressure cooker and it was super-easy. Shortcut cooking method but not a shortcut in flavor--Check out this authentic recipe!Pho Ga has become so mainsteam that most folks refer to the dish by its Vietnamese name rather than the translated name “Vietnamese Chicken Noodle Soup”. What is it about this unassuming soup that has captured everyone’s hearts and tummies? The answer:  simple ingredients–rice noodle and chicken served in an intoxicating broth layered with earthy, aromatic spices. The dish is then enjoyed with abundant fresh herbs and garnishes which further enhance the gastronomic journey! In a word, it’s AMAZING! 🙂

Now that your mouths are watering, let’s get to the recipe. In this post, I share a non-conventional approach for making Pho Ga in a pressure cooker. It’s easy, convenient and allows you to enjoy authentic, homemade pho with minimal fuss. I love this recipe because it’s so easy. I hope you’ll give it a try and let me know what you think!

Notes on the Recipe, Tips and Tricks

The pressure cooker I am using is the Instant Pot IP-DUO60 7-in-1 Programmable Pressure Cooker, 6Qt/1000W. This electric appliance takes the guesswork out of using a pressure cooker.  It’s super easy to use and to clean.

Make the chicken stock from scratch if you have time. (Check out the recipe I shared earlier.) If you’re pressed for time, a store-bought organic chicken broth works great too.

When charring the onion and ginger, it can get fairly smoky so turn on the exhaust fan. The onion and ginger get pretty black but don’t worry as the skin will be removed. If you’re not comfortable with roasting over an open-flame, use a cast-iron pan.

Washing the chicken is a very important step. It rinses away any residual blood and bits that often make the soup cloudy. I use a big bowl to catch the rinse water and this way I can tell the chicken is clean when the water is clear.

If your pressure cooker has a tendency to burn the food touching the bottom of the pot, put down a layer of celery or carrots and then place the chicken on top. The vegetables will buffer the chicken and serve as a natural sweetener for the soup.

After the cooking time elapses, the pressure cooker switches over to a Keep Warm function.  This will keep the soup perfectly hot until you’re ready to serve.

Pho noodles come in different thicknesses and are sized as small, medium and large.  There are no hard and fast rules so choose what you like.  I prefer the medium-sized noodles and cook them for 4 minutes.  The noodles are tender but not mushy.

1 lb of dry rice noodles makes about 2 1/2 lbs cooked rice noodles.  This is a lot but some people like lots of noodles while others love lots of broth.  Most likely, you’ll have some noodles leftover.

Note that I do not season the broth with salt or fish sauce. Each person should salt his or her bowl to taste. When serving this soup, always make sure you provide a generous side of fish sauce. Avoid adding fish sauce directly to the entire soup pot because when the soup is refrigerated, it has a tendency to turn sour.

Watch the video below for instructions.

If you enjoyed this recipe, you may also like: Vermicelli Soup with Chicken, Steamed Pork Roll and Egg (Bun Thang) and Crab Noodle Soup (Bun Rieu).


1 small yellow onion
2-inch section ginger
2 whole star anise
2 cardamom pods
5 cloves
1/2 Tbsp coriander seeds
1/2 tsp fennel seeds
3/4 oz rock sugar
1 Saigon cinnamon stick

5 lb whole organic chicken
2 Tbsp salt
9 cups chicken stock
1 lb rice stick/pho noodles, size medium

Garnishes and Accompaniments
2 green onions, chopped
ground black pepper
2 cups bean sprouts, washed and trimmed
Thai basil, sawtooth herb, cilantro, washed
red chilies
jalapenos, thinly sliced
2 limes, cut into wedges
fish sauce
hoisin sauce
sriracha sauce


Cut the onion in half. Remove the skin from one onion half and then thinly slice. Place into a small bowl and set aside for now.

Set the heat to Medium Low.  Place the remaining onion half and ginger directly over the flame. Cook each side for 5 minutes until charred. Rinse with cool water to wash off the loose char. Remove the outer layer of skin from the onion and ginger. Using a small knife, scrape off the char. Rinse again with cool water.  Use a pestle or meat hammer to slightly smash the ginger.

In a skillet over Low heat, add the star anise, cardamom, cloves, coriander seeds, fennel seeds and cinnamon. Stirring occasionally, toast for 7-8 minutes until fragrant. Remove from the heat and allow to cool. Place the spices into a tea filter and tie shut with twine.

Sprinkle salt on the outside and inside of the chicken. Gently rub the salt into the skin. Wash the chicken thoroughly using a steady stream of cold water.

Trim off any visible fat and discard.

Put the chicken into the pressure cooker.  Add the onion, ginger, rock sugar and spices bag.  Pour in the chicken stock.

Cover with the lid and seal.  Set the cooker to High pressure, the timer to 30 minutes and let everything cook.

After the timer goes off, turn the valve to release the pressure.

Uncover the cooker.  Remove the onion, spices bag and ginger if visible.

Using a large slotted spoon, carefully transfer the entire chicken into a large bowl.  Cover the chicken with ice water and allow to soak for 2 minutes.  Drain the water.  Cover the bowl and allow the chicken to cool further.

Skim the broth and remove any bits floating at the top.

Soak the rice noodle in hot water for 10 minutes until limp.

Bring a large pot of water to a rapid boil over High heat.  Add the drained noodles and swirl in the hot water.  Boil the noodles for 3-4 minutes stirring frequently.  Drain the noodles and then rinse with cold water to stop the cooking process.  Drain and rinse again with cold water.  Toss the noodles to shake off the water.  Use a salad spinner to spin the noodles dry.  Cover until ready to serve.

When the chicken is cooled, remove the breast pieces and cut into thin slices.  Remove the remaining meat from the thighs and body and shred by hand or cut into thin strips.

To serve, add some rice noodles into a large bowl.  Add some sliced onions and chicken.  Ladle in a generous amount of the broth.  Top with green onions and freshly ground black pepper.  Enjoy the soup with the fresh herbs (Thai basil, sawtooth herb and cilantro), bean sprouts, and assorted chili peppers.  Add fish sauce, hoisin sauce, sriracha sauce and lime juice to taste.  Enjoy!

Yields:  5-7 servings

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Delicious homemade pho fast-tracked using a pressure cooker. Check out my recipe!

Vietnamese Chicken Noodle Soup/Pho Ga would not be completed without a refreshing plate of herbs, lime wedges and chilies!

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Glass Noodle Salad with Seafood (Goi Mien Tron Hai San)

A refreshing noodle salad loaded with seafood!Nothing is better on a hot summer day than having a cool meal to chase away the heat.  Abundant noodles with a medley of vegetables and seafood in a light dressing makes this dish super scrumptious and refreshing.  This noodle salad is so easy to toss together and can be served as a main meal or appetizer.  If you need to prepare this dish ahead and chill in the fridge, even better, the salad will be wonderfully marinated.  Bon Appetit!

Notes on the recipe, tips and tricks

Use any type of seafood you like.  For a shortcut, buy seafood that’s already cooked.

Avoid over-soaking or over-cooking the noodles.  They will become a sticky mess.

Make sure to drain the seafood and noodles well.  You don’t want a wet salad.  Here’s a trick to try–put the noodles in a salad spinner.  It does a great job of removing the water.

The recipe below makes enough dressing for the entire salad.  This is not a salad that’s drenched in dressing but is lightly seasoned.  If you want more dressing to serve on the side, double the recipe below.

Watch the video below for instructions.


1/2 lb bean thread noodle also called glass or cellophane noodle
1 1/2 lb mixed seafood:  shrimp, squid, crab and scallops (or use what you like)
2 medium carrots
1/2 small red onion
2 celery stalks
2-3 sweet peppers
1/2 bunch cilantro

1 tsp sesame oil
1 tsp minced garlic
1/4 cup lime juice
3 Tbsp fish sauce
2 tbsp. oyster sauce
1/4 cup sugar

1/4 tsp ground black pepper
2 Tbsp crushed roasted peanuts


Peel the carrots and then cut into 3-inch lengths.  Shred the carrots using a mandolin or cut into long, thin strips.

Cut the red onion into thin slices.

Clean the celery stalks and cut into 3-inch sections.  Cut each section into long, thin strips.

Cut the sweet peppers into thin slices.

Coarsely chop the cilantro.

Cut the larger seafood pieces into bite-sized pieces.

Bring a large pot of water to a rapid boil.  Add the raw seafood and cook for 2-3 minutes while stirring gently.  Add the cooked seafood and swirl in the water for 1 minute.  Transfer the seafood to a bowl of ice water and soak for 1 minute then drain well.

Put the dried noodles into a large bowl and fill with cool water covering the noodles completely.  Let rest for 5 minutes and then drain.  Bring a large pot of water to a rapid bowl.   Add the noodles and swirl in the boiling water for just 15 seconds.  Quickly drain the hot water and then rinse the noodles with cold water.  Drain.  Fill a large bowl with ice water and soak the noodles in the bath for 1 minute.  Drain well.  Cut the noodles into shorter sections using scissors.  Spread out the noodles and allow to air-dry for 15 minutes.

In a measuring cup, combine lime juice, fish sauce, oyster sauce, sugar and garlic.  Stir until the sugar is dissolved.

In a large bowl, add a small amount of the glass noodle.  Add small amounts of each of the vegetables and seafood.  Drizzle with 1-2 Tbsp of the dressing.  Continue making the layers until all of the ingredients are used.  Add the black pepper.  Toss everything combining well and making sure all ingredients are well-combined with the dressing.

When serving, top the salad with the crushed roasted peanuts.

Yields:  4-6 servings

Dish up a heaping amount of this refreshing noodle salad!

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