From Pho (noodle soup) to Bun Cha (grilled meat cutlet and noodle), various Vietnamese dishes are finding space in the menus of city restaurants. the guide maps Mumbai’s culinary scene for the choicest fare
Banana Leaf Smoked Fish at Lemon Leaf
At Lemon Leaf in Bandra, you can tuck into a Vietnamese-style spicy Banana Leaf Smoked Fish with chilli and tomatoes, served with sticky rice (Rs 395) as well as a Vietnamese Rice Paper Roll served with a sweet-spicy dip of either Crunchy Tofu with Napa Cabbage and Pickled Chilly (Rs 250), Grilled Chicken with Lettuce and Mint (Rs 275) or Spicy Grilled Beef with Lettuce and Raw Papaya (Rs 275). They also serve Vietnamese-style Fried Wontons with Napa Cabbage, Spinach and Tomato Drizzle (Rs 240) and Pho, a clear broth with rice noodles served with basil, sprouts, mint, lemon, spring onion and spicy fish sauce. It can be served with sliced chicken (Rs 335), prawn (Rs 385), seafood (Rs 385) or sliced beef (Rs 345).
At Carlton Court, Turner Pali Road Junction, Pali Hill, Bandra (W).
Pho at Asian Street Kitchen
The pure vegetarian and vegan Asian Street Kitchen offers a delectable Pho (Rs 325), a traditional soup consisting of a flavoursome mushroom broth of noodles, mildly flavoured with whole spices. It is topped with mint leaves, sprouts, lemon, basil, and chopped chilli soaked in soy sauce.
At Dev Prakash Building, Chowpatty.
Loc Loc Beef on Bamboo Skewers at Joss
Pan-Asian restaurant Joss serves a diverse range of Vietnamese dishes. It includes Chargrilled Vietnamese Loc Loc Beef on Bamboo Skewers (Rs 580), Vietnamese Tamarind Soup of Tender Chicken (Rs 290) and Vietnamese Fried Rice of Shelled Crab, Shrimps and Chicken (Rs 590).
At Savoy Chambers, Linking Road, Santacruz (W).
Steamed Tiger Prawns at Busaba
Busaba serves Lemongrass Tiger Prawns (Rs 625), Ban Xeo or Vietnamese pancakes (Rs 425), Goi Cuon or Rice Paper wrapped Spring Rolls (Rs 375), Pho or soup (`375) and Vietnamese Sizzling Fish (Rs 475). Their delivery outlet BusaGo serves Banh Mi or a baguette stuffed with fillings (Rs 100-150) and a Mekong Veg Curry (`265), an all-vegetarian adaptation of Sizzling Fish.
At Busaba, Colaba; BusaGo outlets at Pali Hill, Bandra (W); FIFC Building, Bandra Kurla Complex; and Mathuradas Mills Compound, Lower Parel.
Wok-Fried Lemongrass Chicken at Mekong
The Asian fine dine offers dishes such as Wok-Fried Lemongrass Chicken with onions and chilli satay sauce (Rs 900), Pho, a tenderloin noodle soup with star anise, cinnamon broth, onions, holy basil and mint (Rs 700), Pomelo Salad in lime dressing (Rs 800), Aromatic Shrimp, Noodles and Pork Rice Paper Rolls with Vietnamese fish sauce (Rs 1,000) and Steamed Fish with ginger, onions and bokchoy (Rs 1,200).
At Palladium, Lower Parel.
Recipe of Vietnamese Spring Rolls with Kiwi Chutney
>> 4 rice paper sheets
>> 15 gm carrot julienne
>> 10 gm spring onions julienne
>> 10 gm each tri-colour peppers julienne
>> 5 gm fresh coriander
>> 2 gm chopped garlic
>> 5 gm lemon juice
>> 5 gm salt
For kiwi chutney
>> 100 gm chopped kiwi
>> 10 gm chopped chilli
>> 10 gm chopped coriander
>> 10 gm cider vinegar
>> 10 gm brown sugar
>> 2 gm cinnamon
>> 5 gm salt
>> 10 gm butter
For kiwi chutney
>> Heat butter in a sauce pan, add cinnamon stick and the chopped kiwi.
>> Add the remaining ingredients with cider vinegar and brown sugar.
>> Cook the chutney till it becomes a smooth purée. Adjust seasoning with salt.
For spring roll
>> Soak rice paper sheet in cold water for five minutes.
>> Make the stuffing including all the vegetables, add lemon juice, garlic and salt.
>> Take the soaked rice paper sheet on a dry chopping board; put the stuffing in between and roll it like spring rolls.
>> Cut it into two pieces and serve with chilled kiwi chutney.
Recipe courtesy Chef Ajay Chopra, The Westin Mumbai Garden City
All Stir Fry
They offer Vietnamese Spring Rolls with fresh rice paper, lettuce and your choice of fillings (`275 onwards).
At Apollo Bunder, Colaba.
Try their Roasted Chicken and Rice Paper Rolls with Asparagus Ragout and truffle mashed with Potatoes (`570).
At Waterstones Hotel, Sahar Elevated Road, Andheri (E).
They offer a Vietnamese Crispy Duck a la Orange on Shitake Mushroom Pancake (`1,400).
At Cambata Building, 42 Maharshi Karve Road, near Eros Theatre, Churchgate.
The Westin Mumbai Garden City
They serve Vietnamese Spring Rolls, a fresh dish where vegetables are wrapped in a rice paper sheet and served with plum sauce (`650 for veg; `750 for non-veg).
At Oberoi Garden City, Goregaon (E).
Vietnamese food is getting very popular in city restaurants as it is healthy and has a unique flavour. Unlike Indian food, their food is very light and focusses on the freshness of the ingredients.
— Chef Ajay Chopra, The Westin Mumbai
We have been dishing out Vietnamese food since Busabong in Goa, i.e. before the millennium, and it’s continued to be some of our most ordered cuisine at Busaba and BusaGo. The cuisine is versatile and has a slight kick to it but it’s also more subtle with delicate flavours. The produce is king, unlike in Indian cuisine or Thai. Flavours such as mint, tamarind, and the infallible fish sauce-lemon-sugar trio are prevalent in Vietnamese cuisine.
—Nikhil Chib, owner, Busaba and BusaGo
Vietnamese cuisine is one of the freshest, simplest and yet most complicated cuisines in the world. lt is one cuisine that has taken so much from other cultures and influences via invasions or proximity to a particular culture. There are influences of French, Chinese and Japanese cuisines that has developed over a period of time. Plus, there is local indigenous food culture that has taken so well to all those influences. They have a big liking for fermented foods. They also use spices like cinnamon and star anise, similar to Indian cuisine.
— Chef Mitesh Rangras, partner, SID Hospitality
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