Vietnamese Vegetarian is a delicious, healthy and flavour-packed dish that is sure to delight vegetarians and meat-eaters alike. With its roots in the traditional Vietnamese kitchen and its unique combination of spices, this recipe offers a variety of ingredients, textures and flavours that create a truly special experience.
The beauty of this dish is that it can be served with a lightness and delicacy, yet still packed with bold flavours. It also offers a unique twist on traditional vegetarian cuisine, taking cues from classic Vietnamese ingredients without relying on the more familiar flavours of vegetables like broccoli and cauliflower.
For this Vietnamese Vegetarian recipe, the base ingredients are mushrooms and vermicelli. The mushrooms are the star of the dish, giving the dish its characteristic earthy, umami-rich flavour. They are sautéed with shallots, garlic, and ginger and then simmered in a savoury tomato-based sauce with a touch of sweetness and sourness. The vermicelli is cooked and then stir-fried with the mushrooms, adding a slightly chewy texture and helping to tie the ingredients together.
To finish the dish off, herbs like Thai basil, Vietnamese coriander and aromatic lemongrass are added to add freshness and depth of flavour. All these ingredients are combined and served with a side of jasmine rice and perhaps some sliced cucumber to dress the meal.
With its unique and exquisite flavours and a surprisingly simple preparation, Vietnamese Vegetarian is sure to become a firm favourite for all vegetarians. By drawing on both classic Vietnamese cuisine and more traditional vegetarian ingredients, this creative take on vegetarian fare is sure to become a regular on the dinner table.
- 1/2 cup mushrooms (shiitake, crimini or button)
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 SHALLOT, diced
- One thumb size ginger, peeled and grated
- 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
- 1/2 cup vegetable stock
- 2 tablespoons tamari or soy sauce
- 3 tablespoons tomatopaste
- 1/4 cup SLICED carrots
- 1/4 cup diced red bell peppers
- 2 tablespoons honey
- 2 tablespoons rice vinegar
- 1/3 cup vermicelli
- 1/3 cup lightly packed Thai basil leaves
- 1/3 cup lightly packed Vietnamese coriander leaves
- 2 tablespoons finely chopped lemongrass
- 1 small lime, quartered
- Optional garnishes: Sliced cucumber, jasmine rice
Heat the oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add the mushrooms, shallot, garlic, and ginger and cook until the vegetables are tender, about 5 minutes.
Add the vegetable stock, tamari, tomato paste, carrots, bell peppers, honey, and rice vinegar and bring to a simmer. Simmer for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally.
Add the vermicelli and cook for an additional 5 minutes. Add the Thai basil and Vietnamese coriander and cook for 1 more minute.
Transfer the mixture to a serving dish and sprinkle over the lemongrass and a few squeezes of lime juice. Serve with a side of jasmine rice or chopped cucumber. Enjoy!