The cooking class with chef Viet at Dao Tien River Restaurant followed our visit with him to the produce market. Viet took us step by step through making fresh spring rolls, money bags, braised eggplant in a clay pot, and grilled fish in banana leaves. The spring rolls were my favourite. I’ve been eating them everywhere and absolutely love them. In fact, I’ve almost convinced myself I will be able to make them at home – only time will tell. The part I am most intrigued by is using a steamer to make the soft rice paper from a slurry of rice powder and water. My roll looked pretty good and tasted even better.
The money bags were quite easy to make – stir frying an assortment of chopped ingredients, wrapping the mixture in wonton skins, and tying them up with a knotted spring onion. They were deep fried in the kitchen and we ate them with plum sauce.
The eggplant and fish dishes were also not too difficult to make, though Viet combines comedy with cooking and this often made getting the recipe right just a little more challenging. He finished by teaching us how to peel a tomato and use the peel to make a perfect tomato rose. Marg’s was perfect – mine was a mess! This was a lot of fun and I’m hoping to use some of the knowledge I gained in my own kitchen when I get back home.