Banh Mi

  • Level: Intermediate
  • Total: 2 hr 50 min (includes marinating time)
  • Active: 1 hr 40 min
  • Yield: 4 servings
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Ingredients

Wok-Fried Pork:

6 tablespoons fish sauce

1/4 cup minced garlic

1/4 cup minced shallot

2 to 3 tablespoons dark soy sauce

2 rounded tablespoons sugar

2 stalks lemongrass, finely grated on a microplane

1 bird's eye chile (Thai chile), chopped

Juice of 1 lime

2 pounds pork tenderloin or pork shoulder, very thinly sliced

1 tablespoon vegetable oil

Daikon and Carrot Pickle:

3/4 cup rice vinegar

1/4 cup sugar

2 carrots, peeled and julienned

1 daikon radish, peeled and julienned

Juice of 1 lime

Chicken Liver Pate:

2 tablespoons vegetable oil

1/2 stick (4 tablespoons) butter

4 shallots, sliced

2 pints chicken livers, cleaned

6 thyme sprigs

3 hard-boiled eggs, peeled

Salt and freshly ground black pepper

Splash brandy

1 large baguette, cut in half horizontally

1/2 stick (4 tablespoons) unsalted butter, softened

Cilantro, for garnish

Scallions, for garnish

Bird's eye chile (Thai chile), chopped, for garnish

Sriracha, optional

Directions

  1. For the wok-fried pork: Combine the fish sauce, garlic, shallot, soy sauce, sugar, lemongrass, chile and lime juice in a large bowl and toss together. Add the pork and set aside in the refrigerator for at least 1 hour or up to overnight.
  2. Heat a wok over high heat. Add the oil to the wok. Transfer the pork to the wok with tongs, adding a few spoonfuls of the marinade for flavoring. Fry the pork until cooked through and slightly wok-charred.
  3. For the daikon and carrot pickle: Combine the vinegar, sugar, carrots, daikon and lime juice in a bowl. Let sit for at least 1 hour.
  4. For the chicken liver pate: Heat the oil and butter in a cast iron skillet and sweat the shallots. Add the chicken livers, thyme and eggs and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Cook until the chicken livers are just cooked through and remove from heat. Add the brandy and ignite carefully with a long match. Let the flame die down. Return to the heat. Season with salt and pepper. Remove from the heat, let cool slightly and remove the thyme sprigs.
  5. Puree the pate in a food processor and transfer to a storage container, pressing out all the air. Cover the surface of the pate with plastic wrap to store.
  6. Make the sandwiches: Hollow out the baguette by scooping out the excess bread from the middle. Spread 1/4 cup of the pate along the bottom half of the bread and spread the unsalted butter along the top half of the bread (reserve the remaining pate for another use). Add the wok-fried pork, 1 cup of the pickled daikon and carrot and garnish with cilantro, scallions, chopped chili and sriracha to taste if using.
  7. Slice the baguette into 4 pieces and serve immediately.