Take all the fresh and lively flavors of your favorite Vietnamese banh mi sandwich and transform it into a burger instead.
That’s just what “Chicken Banh Mi Burgers” is all about.
Easy enough to whip on a weeknight, this delectable recipe is from “Delicious Gatherings” (Shadow Mountain), of which I received a review copy.
The book is by Tara Bench, the founder of the perfectly named blog, TaraTeaspoon, as well as the former food editor at Martha Stewart Living and former food director at Ladies’ Home Journal.
With that kind of background, she definitely knows what home-cooks want — fuss-free recipes for everyday eating or holiday entertaining that deliver. This book delivers just that, with more than 120 recipes, most of which span only one page.
James Beard Award-winning food writer Danielle Centoni, a former food colleague of mine she was at the Oakland Tribune and I was at sister newspaper the San Jose Mercury News, greatly expands on the notion of what fried rice can be.
The book includes globally-inspired 50 recipes. Of course, there are standards such as “Classic Chinese Fried Rice with BBQ Pork” and “Spicy Fried Rice with Chinese Broccoli, Ground Pork, and Szechuan Chili Oil.” But there is plenty more that you’d be hard-pressed to have considered before, including “Fried Rice with Halloumi, Pickled Onions, and Zhug,” “Carbonara Fried Rice,” and “New Mexican Chili Fried Rice with Queso and Pork.”
She also includes tips for making fried rice (always start with day-old cooked rice), proper water ratios when cooking rice, and ways to avoid pests growing in your stored rice (freeze it for three days first).
Her “Vietnamese Pork Meatball Banh Mi Fried Rice” has all the vibrant flavors of your favorite inexpensive Vietnamese sandwich, but its foundation is rice rather than a French baguette. That means this dish is gluten-free, especially if you swap out the soy sauce for tamari instead.