Bun Cha is a Vietnamese dish which mainly consists of grilled pork (marinated with sweet caramel sauce), rice vermicelli, fresh herbs and a delicious dipping sauce. It is one of the most famous dishes of Hanoi and can be served as lovely summertime lunch or a light dinner. It usually is served with some fresh Hanoi spring rolls which you also dip into the sauce.
Recipe for 6 Portions
Traditional dipping sauce:
Traditionally bun cha is served with some delicious Hanoi spring rolls. Click here for the recipe!
Cut the LEAN PORK in small pieces. Blanch the RICE VERMICELLI for 1 to 2 minutes until soft. Then rinse them with cold water and drain them.
Slice the CARROT and KOHLRABI. Mix the slices with some SUGAR, SALT and VINEGAR to pickle them. Put aside for the next steps.
Chop the SHALLOTS and squeeze them (we did it by hand) to separate the liquid. Save the liquid and the chopped pieces to marinate the pork later on.
Cut 1/2 of the SPRING ONION into 5 cm slices. Chop the rest.
Chop the CHILI and GARLIC into small pieces.
Clean the CORIANDER, MINT and THAI BASIL and drain them.
Mix 2 tbsp of SUGAR and 2 tbsp of WATER in a pan. Cook and stir until the mixture has a nice dark brown color (something like the color of soy sauce). In case the mixture starts to burn add some more water. This will be the CARAMEL SAUCE to marinate the pork.
Marinate the sliced PORK with SALT, PEPPER, CHICKEN STOCK POWDER, SUGAR, SHALLOT JUICE, FISH SAUCE and the 5 cm SPRING ONION pieces. Add 1/2 tbsp of CARAMEL SAUCE. Mix everything well. You can either fry the meat in a pan or (what is usually done) grill it on a BBQ until well-done.
Marinate the MINCED PORK with SALT, PEPPER, CHICKEN STOCK POWDER, SUGAR, CHOPPED SHALLOTS, CHOPPED SPRING ONION, FISH SAUCE and 1 tbsp of CARAMEL SAUCE. Mix everything well and roll into small balls. Flatten the meat balls and fry them in a pan until well-done. Again: The traditional way would be to grill the meat on a BBQ.
For the dipping sauce: Mix 4 cups of WATER, 1 cup of SUGAR, 3/4 cup of FISH SAUCE, 3/4 cup of VINEGAR with some PEPPER, chopped CHILI and chopped GARLIC. Mix well.
Put some of the grilled PORK (both kinds) in a bowl. Add some pickled CARROTS and KOHLRABI. Then pour in some of the DIPPING SAUCE. Put some RICE VERMICELLI, LETTUCE and HERBS on a separate plate and serve everything. Before eating you put some rice vermicelli, lettuce and herbs into the bowl. It is also nice to dip some cut pieces of Hanoi spring roll into the mixture. Refill with dipping sauce or other ingredients whenever necessary.