Im going to be serving an assortment of Banh mi for the adults attending my kids bday party. What should I serve on the side? has to be really easy as I’ll have a house full of out of town guests-prefer something prepared night before. Even considering purchasing frozen potstickers and making dipping sauce.
The banh mi IS a pretty filling sandwich. Its heritage is partly French, so it is appropriate for Euro-centric accompaniments. I’d have potato salad or macaroni salad. Not coleslaw since the sandwich has carrot/daikon slaw
It’s undeniable. Banh Mi is the PERFECT sandwich. Rich, savory meat combined with bright and crunchy homemade pickles stuffed into a fluffy baguette; what’s not to love?! We love this version because it requires minimal ingredients but still packs a powerful punch of flavor. Don’t sleep on it, people!
Made this? Let us know how it went in the comment section below!
YIELDS: 2 SERVINGS PREP TIME: 0 HOURS 15 MINS TOTAL TIME: 0 HOURS 40 MINS
- 10 oz. pork tenderloin
- 6 tbsp. hoisin sauce, divided
- 6 tbsp. rice wine vinegar, divided
- 2 garlic cloves, grated
- 2 tbsp. fish sauce
- 1 medium carrot, thinly sliced
- 1 medium daikon radish, thinly sliced
- 1 tsp. kosher salt
- 2 tbsp. vegetable oil
- 12-inch baguette, sliced in half lengthwise
- 1/4 c. mayonnaise
- 1/2 c. cilantro leaves and tender stems
- Preheat oven to 425°. Place pork tenderloin into the freezer for 15 minutes; this will make it easier to slice thinly.
- Slice frozen tenderloin as thinly as possible. Transfer to a medium bowl, add 3 tablespoons hoisin sauce, 3 tablespoons rice vinegar, garlic, and fish sauce to bowl; mix until well combined. Let sit at room temperature for 15 minutes.
- Toss carrot and daikon with remaining vinegar and salt; let sit at room temperature until ready to use. In a large cast-iron skillet on medium high, heat oil and add marinated pork. Cook without stirring for 4 minutes. Give it a toss and continue to cook 1 minute.
- Toast baguette in oven for 10 minutes until golden brown. Spread mayonnaise on bottom half and remaining hoisin sauce on top half. Layer pork, then pickled veggies and cilantro on bottom half. Place on the top half and slice cross wise before serving.
This recipe was semi-inspired by the Chinese Chicken Salad at The Cheesecake Factory. I fell in love with dish in eighth grade—it made me feel grown up and sophisticated. Twenty something years later, I still find the salad delicious. It’s sweet, savory, refreshing, and extremely crunchy. (I’m a huge sucker for iceberg lettuce.)
The History of Chinese Chicken Salad
The exact origin of “Chinese Chicken Salad” is unknown. However, legend has it that it was invented in the 1960s at Madam Wu’s in Los Angeles because Cary Grant requested it. Sunset magazine published a recipe in 1970, and Wolfgang Puck created his own version of it in the 80’s.
The salad itself is much more American than it is Chinese. In her book, The Seventh Daughter: My Culinary Journey From Beijing To San Francisco, chef Cecilia Chang says, “In China, lettuce was imported and rare and salads were things that were pickled.” Because my recipe is based on a American chains version of a very American dish, I decided to change the name to more accurately describe what it is: a crunchy salad with chicken and mandarin oranges.
The Crunch Factor
Many restaurant versions of the dish, including The Cheesecake Factory use wonton strips and crispy rice noodles. I sub in a block of broken up ramen—the cheap, dried stuff, not the fresh noodles that come refrigerated. Broken up, the crunchy, wavy noodles act as croutons. The almonds can be easily swapped for cashews or roasted peanuts.
Leftover rotisserie chicken works wonderfully for this recipe, but if you have chicken breasts on hand, follow our easy guide to poaching chicken.
I’m a sucker for the syrupy sweetness you get from a can of mandarin oranges. But fresh mandarin oranges (aka clementines) will add the perfect pop of brightness to your salad.
YIELDS: 8 SERVINGS PREP TIME: 0 HOURS 15 MINS TOTAL TIME: 0 HOURS 20 MINS
FOR THE SALAD
- 3 c. finely chopped romaine or iceberg lettuce
- 2 c. shredded red cabbage
- 2 c. shredded chicken
- 1/2 c. jarred mandarin oranges, drained
- 1 instant ramen packet, crushed (flavor packet discarded)
- 1/2 c. shredded carrot
- 1/3 c. sliced green onions
- 1/4 c. sliced almonds
FOR THE DRESSING
- 3 tbsp. rice wine vinegar
- 2 tbsp. honey
- 1 tbsp. sesame oil
- 1 tbsp. hoisin sauce
- 2 tbsp. soy sauce
- 1 tsp. minced ginger
- 1 clove garlic, minced
- 1/4 c. vegetable oil
- Make salad: In a large bowl, toss together lettuce, red cabbage, chicken, mandarin oranges, crushed ramen noodles, carrots, green onions, and sliced almonds.
- Make dressing: In a small bowl, whisk together vinegar, honey, sesame oil, hoisin sauce, soy sauce, ginger, and garlic. Slowly drizzle in vegetable oil, whisking constantly until emulsified.
- Before serving, drizzle dressing over salad and toss to combine.
Crunchy Mandarin Orange-Chicken Salad