I was first introduced to the Bahn Mi by my husband about 10 years ago. We were already eating other Vietnamese favorites from the best local take out joint in our town, when a bakery opened up next door. They sold bread of course, to other local restaurants, but specialized in this iconic Vietnamese street food favorite. Like all good authentic restaurants that specialize in something magical, this one had 5 items on the menu, also the menu was written in Vietnamese. The restaurant was standing room only, and even that was limited.
My husband was clearly the more daring eater of the two of us, because one day for lunch he ordered one of each for him and a coworker, no idea what mystery he was about to ingest. They cut them up and picked their favorites, well the truth is they loved them all, but the one that featured pork was the top of the top.
At some point we moved out of the city and into suburbia and our favorite haunts became too long of a drive to enjoy as much as we would have preferred. And so I decided to start making these at home. It took me quite a few sandwiches to really nail down the ingredients and find substitutes for things I could not find at the grocery store, daikon radish only appears occasionally in my local store.
- 1/2 pound pre-cooked Pulled Pork
- 4 hoagie rolls, sliced and toasted
- Mayonnaise, home made is best or Japanese Mayonnaise
- 2 Carrots, shredded
- 1 English cucumber, julienned
- 2 Celery Sticks, thinly sliced
- 1 cup Rice Vinegar
- 1 cup Water
- 4 Garlic Cloves, minced
- 1/2 teaspoon Red Pepper Flakes
- 1 tablespoon salt
- 1 tablespoon white sugar
- 4 Green onions, thinly sliced
- Cilantro, rinsed and dried
- Jalapeño, thinly sliced
- 1 Lime, sliced into wedges
- Siracha, optional
- Start by creating a quick pickling liquid for the carrot and cucumber. Here is the link to my Quick Pickle Recipe.
- Combine Rice Vinegar, water, garlic, red pepper flakes, sugar and salt.
- Whisk until combined.
- Pour over carrots and cucumber.
- Stir occasionally.
- Mixture needs at least 30 minutes to marry all the flavors.
- I like to use the Pulled Pork from my favorite Instant Pot Pulled Pork recipe, a good substitute would be a thinly sliced pork roast, or thinly sliced pork chops quick seared on high heat. The meat should be warmed on high heat prior to assembling the sandwich, the goal is a few crusty brown edges.
- Split 4 hoagie rolls down the middle, toast open rolls in a 350 degree oven until brown.
- Prep all remaining ingredients while the rolls toast.
- Liberally smear rolls with mayonnaise, homemade is best but any high quality mayo is great.
- Assemble sandwiches.
- 3 tablespoons Meat
- 2 tablespoons Carrot and cucumber, drained
- 2 tablespoons Green Onion
- 3-4 thinly sliced jalapeño
- 3-4 sprigs of cilantro
- Liberal squirt of Siracha
- Squeeze of a lime wedge
All ingredients are completely adaptable, these sandwiches would be equally great with chicken, beef or roasted tofu. If you can find daikon radish or spring radish that would be a great addition to the quick pickled vegetables. If you hate cilantro, then substitute with fresh basil or parsley. The jalapeño and siracha are subject to your spice preferences.