Regional Eating: Vietnamese Cuisine

In continuation with the idea to post regional suggestions, both for cooking at home, and ordering at restaurants, today's entry has a Far East Focus:

Vietnamese Cuisine!

Common ingredients used in traditional Vietnamese Cooking include  fish sauce, soy sauce, rice, fresh herbs (including lemon grass, mint, Vietnamese mint, long coriander and Thai basil leaves) and a variety of fresh fruit & Veg.  

The most common meats used in Vietnamese cuisine are pork, chicken, fish, and various kinds of seafood, as well as many vegetarian options.

So how do we keep it Paleo?

– Be sure that you ask your server for which dishes are free of soy-sauce.  It may sound unlikely, but I have been able to find salads, steamed veg dishes as well as seafood poached with lovely herbs at Vietnamese restaurants.

-As always, opt to skip the rice that so often accompanies the meal; ask for the chef to please prepare whatever veg they have on hand; steam, saute… whatever suits your fancy!

– Some places will offer sashimi- always a great option; as is seaweed salad, if you're able to get it without the soy-dressing that is often used.  Skip the edamame and choose a salad with fresh regional herbs and hold the dressing!

-Lettuce wraps are a great option- again, just double check on the prep method to ensure no soy, rice or other legume or grain-based ingredients.

-Skip the rice and noodle section and head straight for the entree.  Try something new, like black cod or go traditional with a steak dish.

-If you're splurging, try a coconut or other tropical sorbet as a lovely way to cleanse the palate and end the meal on a sweet note!