What do you do when you have leftover meat? You make a sandwich. And that’s what I did when I had some grilled pork left over after making bun thit nuong. A Vietnamese sandwich, or bánh mì, is made with a small baguette and uses condiments like pâté and mayo. Again, the whole French colonialism thing.
The main filling of the sandwich can be anything from different kinds of pork, chicken, head cheese, tofu and even eggs. The obvious exclusion here is beef, which I don’t think I’ve ever seen in a banh mi before. It makes a great lunch, but I love bringing these to the beach or on a hike…no extra utensils needed.
Here’s what you’ll need to make a banh mi thit nuong (grilled pork sandwich):
– 1 small baguette (you can usually find these really cheap at Asian or Mexican grocery stores. The Mexican produce store across the street from me sells 3 for $1)
– meat of your choice
– cucumbers, sliced length-wise
– do chua
– a few sprigs of cilantro
– some sliced jalapeño peppers for heat
Slice the baguette almost in half length-wise, keeping on side still attached to hold in all the ingredients. You can throw it in the oven to toast, but I like mine untoasted. Spread mayo on the inside (both sides). Place cucumbers and the do chua on the bottom of the sandwich. Next, place the meat on top. Finally, top off with cilantro and jalapeños. Some people like to cut the sandwich in half, but generally I eat it from one end to the other.
This time the bread was a little tough in the final product, but I think that’s because the baguettes were sitting out in a big bin all day at the store. I really loved the cucumbers in the sandwich. It hast a great crunch and gives the sandwich its juiciness. Overall, this turned out pretty well for my first ever home made banh mi.