This recipe has a rather charming backstory. It's inspired by 100 year old Hanoi restaurant, Chả cá la Vong. They only serve one dish, the Chả cá, which has become so iconic that the restaurant's street has been renamed after it.
Meaty white fish absorbs marinades beautifully - this one needs at least two hours so remember to prepare long before you plan to eat!
800 grams firm white fish fillets, eg Ling, Gurnard, Monkfish
80 grams fresh ginger, finely chopped
40 grams frozen galangal, finely chopped
70 ml fish sauce
10 grams ground turmeric
150 ml water
2 tablespoons canola oil
200 grams brown onion, finely chopped
60 grams snake beans or round green beans, sliced into 3 cm pieces
10 grams fresh dill leaves
240 grams rice noodles, cooked as per packet instructions
80 grams roasted, skinless peanuts, chopped
nuoc cham dipping sauce, recipe below.
Cut the fish into bite size pieces. Put the ginger and galangal in a blender with the fish sauce, or use a mortar and pestle to make a paste. Squeeze out the excess liquid.
Mix the ground turmeric and water to make a paste and place in a bowl with the fish. Add the blended paste to the fish and mix through, adding more water if needed. Marinate in the fridge for at least two hours.
Heat the canola oil in a large sauté pan and add the fish. Sauté on one side for about 30 seconds, turn the fish, add the onions, beans and most of the dill. Sauté for 2-3 minutes.
To serve: Place the cooked noodles on a plate and arrange the fish over the top. Garnish with the remainder of the dill and peanuts. Serve with nuoc cham dipping sauce.
Nuoc Cham dipping sauce
100 ml warm water
20 grams sugar
50 ml white rice vinegar
100 ml fish sauce
2 red chillis, finely chopped
½ clove garlic, finely sliced
Stir the water, sugar, white rice vinegar and fish sauce together in a bowl. Squeeze in some fresh lime and garnish with a few slices of chilli and garlic.
Cafe Hanoi are taking part in Auckland Restaurant Month, offering a special four course shared meal for $55. Courses include pho bo (traditional beef noodle soup), braised pork and shrimp summer rolls, Hanoi-style grilled pork and a traditional Vietnamese dessert of sesame dumplings. See menu and full details here.