I like Vietnamese sandwich, also known as Banh Mi because it is different from most sandwiches – there are chillies and pickles in it! In Vietnam, pork and chicken sandwiches are popular. But I am sharing a vegetarian version of this awesome sandwich. You can also make it with paneer!! You can make the pickle and peanut sauce up to two days in advance. Perhaps you can organise a sandwich party and let everyone design their own sandwich!
TO MAKE THE PICKLE
100 g cucumber, seeded, cut into strips 0.75 cm wide and 4 cm long
100 g carrot, peeled, cut into strips 0.75 cm wide and 4 cm long
100 g daikon radish, peeled, cut into strips 0.75 cm wide and 3 cm long
1 large onion, cubed
1 tablespoon sugar
1 teaspoon salt
100 ml white vinegar
2 tablespoons water
TO MAKE THE PEANUT SAUCE
50 g coarsely pounded roasted peanuts
80 g Hoisin sauce
1 red chilli, finely chopped
2 teaspoons coarsely grated ginger
100 ml hot water
TO PREPARE TOFU
3 cloves garlic, pounded coarsely
60 g Thai Chilli Sauce
30 g Hoisin sauce
1 teaspoon 5-Spice powder
300 g firm tofu, cut into 1 cm thick slices
Oil for shallow frying
TO MAKE THE SANDWICH
2 small baguettes or other rolls
1-2 tablespoons olive oil
Lettuce or other salad leaves
Vietnamese Vegetable Pickle
- To make the pickle combine cucumber, carrot, daikon, onion, sugar and salt in a large bowl.
- Using fingertips, massage salt and sugar into vegetables until dissolved.
- Add rice vinegar and water.
- Pack vegetables into a medium-sized jar.
- Pickles can be used immediately, or for best results, seal jar and refrigerate at least overnight and up to 1 week.
- Combine and stir all the ingredients for making the peanut sauce together in a bowl and keep aside.
- To make the marinade for the tofu, combine garlic, Thai Chilli Sauce, Hoisin sauce and 5-Spice powder in a small bowl.
- Brush both sides of the tofu with the prepared marinade.
- Heat oil in a frying pan over medium heat. Fry the tofu, in batches, for 2–3 minutes each side or until caramelized.
- To make the sandwich, slit the baguette sideways. Spread with the prepared peanut sauce on the bases. Top with lettuce, 2-3 pieces of the tofu and lastly a generous amount of the drained pickle.
- Sandwich with the remaining halves to serve.