Sunday, July 15, 2007

The - crapimisshavingsomeonecookforme(mom!) & Happy Birthday MMT(heart) Bun Rieu recipe:

So I decided to make some home cooking for myself and the bf. I was going between Bun Bo Hue (my favorite Vietnamese soup) to Bun Rieu (one of his favorites) and decided to go the Bun Rieu route since it was for his birthday. Bun Rieu, I believe, originated from Northern Vietnam (where all the best soups come from). It is a seafood/tomato based broth with a whole lot of bang of flavor. My version is easy to make because well... i suck at cooking and my bf knows it.. so this is pretty much a fool-proof way of make Bun Rieu.

I had to think about this a week in advance believe it or not. Cooking is a HUGE deal to me since I don't do it a lot...and when i do it's usually rice & eggs & Ramen. I surfed the internet for any different bun rieu ideas and not surprisingly there weren't a lot of different variations out there. Matter of fact, i believe i only found 2 recipes... but lots of pictures of people who were eating bun rieu. (bastards!)

So to start off here's what you need to buy:
Damage: 1 hour/60 dollars/having to deal with some mean Asian people at the Asian store
Tomatoes (lots, I bought 8 but used 5, so buy 6)
Green Onion
Bean Sprouts
Chicken Stock (4 cans)
Minced Crab & Prawn meat w/ spices (6 cans)
Shrimp paste (the purple stinky kind. "mam tom" in vietnamese)
Spare Ribs (2 packages)
pre fried tofu
Shrimp (a lot)

Boil your spareribs for 1-2 hours. The length depends on how tender you like your meat. Cook it for at least 1 hour... I think i cooked mine for about 2:30 hours (i forgot about it) the meat was so tender it fell off the bones. Set aside.
The soup base:
Damage: crying from onions/smelly kitchen. Seriously. Smelly Kitchen. Open your windows, turn on your fans, and feel sorry for your neighbors.

Cut two big tomatoes into wedges. Cut 1 whole onion and smash about 10 cloves of garlic. Heat your pot, once your pot is hot enough, throw in oil and then garlic. Saute your onions until they are clear and then your tomatoes until they are soft.
Throw in two cans of minced prawn and crab stuff. (One can each)
At this point, i got lazy and forgot to take a lot of pictures =(. Pour in 4 big cans of chicken stock and bring it up to a boil, then lower the heat to bring down to a simmer. Cut up the rest of your tomatoes and let the join the party.
Prep every thing else. That is- peel all your shrimp. You may want to taste your broth at this point... if it's not flavorful enough for you, put in squirts of fish sauce for your liking . or if it is too flavorful, add in water.
You can also put your spare ribs into your soup at this time (just the meat not the water!)
Shrimp balls: Normally you mix shrimp with minced pork, but i totally forgot the mince pork so i made strictly shrimp balls.
Place garlic into a food processor. Process.
Place shrimp into same food processor. Process until well blended and mush.
Add salt, pepper, and sugar. How much? i don't know, guesstimate it... it doesn't matter too too much since the shrimp balls will be mixed in with your soup anyway.
Once this is done, take a bowl of oil, dip your fingers in it and grab shrimp and drop them into the pot. Shrimp cooks easily, and they'll start rising to the top.

I'm kind of mad that I didn't take a picture of this part. It's an important interesting part that I've specifically learned from my bf...but because I was just watching and spacing out i forgot to take pictures! The part i'm talking about is the eggs:

If you like eggs you can add as much as you want. We only had about 7 eggs left in the house so that's how many we used. Crack the eggs and seperate the yolk from the whites. Blend all the whites w/ a highspeed blender until you get a foamy froth like texture. Open one more can of shrimp/can meat and fold in with the eggs. Pour the mixture slowly over your broth. You will see that it won't sink in. Cover up in a low-medium heat for the eggs to cook into a yummy goodness.
The prefried tofu can be added later.

Oops- at some point, you want to cook your vermicelli! Pour your hot broth over some cooked vermicelli add some sriracha hot sauce and you got yourself some mommy did not cook this for me bun rieu!
(feeds 6-8 people)

So for bun rieu the result was:
6 hours of intense labor (1/2 kidding)
feet pain
loads and loads of dish washing
smelly house
happy boyfriend
Enough bun rieu to eat for 5 days straight!

In the middle of all this i also made white cake with greentea creamcheese frosting. It didn't come out the way that i wanted so i won't waste time posting how i made that. It was good, but i couldn't get the green tea taste that i wanted. Why the hell is it so hard to find Matcha green tea powder around here?!

....damn i suck at cooking/recipe instructions. There goes my cook book dream.

oh well! Enjoy!


amazing said...

awww FUCK!! i had just typed up some comments for your entry right now and for some reason, i couldn't maximize window. so whatever i had typed up just went down the drain because i had to close the friggin' window. ugh!

in any case, to this day i still have never eaten viet food (i don't think), and i don't care if you don't consider yourself a good cook or not, but based on the images alone, that bun rieu stuff looks GOOD!! care to send me some today?! i don't feel like eating cafeteria food today :( and i'm hungry!!

hanh said...

I'm hungry too!! I hate caf food!! Let's go drink soda and eat chips. Okay iku yo!

amazing said...

haha i ended up eating like a small cup of those fruit cocktail thingies with syrup -- they're GOOD. and i had a donut. very umm... unhealthy :( but i guess chips + soda is just as bad ;P

ever play mario kart for the 64? wario says in his weird voice, "here we gooooooooo"... and for some reason, i thought of that when you i imagined you saying "iku yo" ! sleepyhead = wario =D

Me said...

uh hem, who showed you how to cook this?

amazing said...

for the second time in three days, your entry is making me hungry. i already had one of my co-workers asking why i was looking at handbags in one of your previous entries. now they're gonna wonder why i'm staring at pictures of soup =(

gahhhh damnit, it's raining and i don't want to go out for lunch!

speaking of lunch, me and my co-worker went out to dairy queen for lunch yesterday. YES, DAIRY QUEEN! my lunch = strawberry cheesecake blizzard! suffice to say, i was hungry for the rest of the afternoon =(

hanh said...

I think i've been to dairy queen once in my life... i don't even remember that experience. Why don't you try making the soup? It'll be interesting if it comes out the same way from my instructions =]

amazing said...

a lot of people i know love dairy queen. they must've grown up on that ish, like oreo cookies. blegh @ oreo cookies dipped in milk.

hahaha what's your goal, becoming the rachel ray of the internet? i'd end up food poisoning myself if i try to cook something as complex as that!! =(

hanh said...

wow! Rachel Ray of the internet.. i never thought of that as a career goal but hmm....

amazing said...

she uses too many vegetables that i don't like in her recipes. that's one reason i don't like her. another? her voice annoys the hell out of me. two of my ex-co-workers went to see her talk show a few months ago, and they told me she's real cool and chill in real life =)

you're no different, right? =P

roast beef sandwich today. YES!!