Cooking with Mom: Bánh Cuốn

My love and understanding of Vietnamese food stems from my mom and her amazing cooking skills. She was born in Hà Tiên, Vietnam (a town on the southern coast of VN and right next to Cambodia) and sought refuge after the war. She made her way to the United States by boat and arrived in 1980 bringing along her taste palette and knowledge of Vietnamese cuisine.

It is such an honor to have grown up with authentic Vietnamese flavors and dishes. My mom would have 2-4 dishes on the dinner table everyday so you can imagine how spoiled I was as a child!  Our house was the most popular on the block during the community garage sale….not because of household items, but because my mom sold egg rolls! My mom’s cooking is highly praised in the Vietnamese community that she is a part of, and many people often request orders of her dishes.

This post is a first in the series called “Cooking with Mom” to honor all her talent + for me to learn her skills. Please note that I will not be sharing recipes as my mom cooks everything to taste and does not measure anything. I will link Vietnamese restaurants in Columbus where you may find these dishes. I hope this post inspires you to try Vietnamese cuisine, get in the kitchen and experiment, or spend time with your mom/loved one!

This dish is called Bánh cuốn. It is a rice flour crepe that’s rolled and stuffed with minced pork, shrimp, and veggies (the stuffing can vary including tofu, mushrooms, and/or different protein). Sometimes the dish is served as plain rice flour crepes with protein on the side.

The rice flour powder can be found at Asian grocery stores and is mixed with water + oil. The process of making the crepe and rolling the filling inside can be a bit tedious, but the process goes faster with a helper!

It is commonly eaten with steamed bean sprouts, cucumbers, herbs, and fish sauce vinaigrette. Fried shallots and garlic add extra layers of flavor. Best served hot and fresh!!

How beautiful is my mom’s presentation? I had such a fun time with her and documenting my learning experience. I’m very excited to continue this series with her!

Bánh cuốn can be found in Columbus at Huong’s Restaurant and MiLi Cafe

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