Spicy, sweet, meaty and delicious, this Vietnamese sandwich makes the perfect weekend casual lunch.
The chicken is marinated, then grilled over coals and served up on toasted crusty French baguette with herbs and vegetables. A spicy-sweet nuoc cham sauce on the side to use as a dip completes the picture.
This is one of my favorite weekend lunches. I am often found out while shopping on a Saturday, dropping in for a quick bite, and it is often this kind of sandwich. Paired with a soft roll (goi cuon) and bubble tea or Vietnamese coffee, it is just right. But you don’t need to go out to get this yummy sandwich. They are oh so simple to put together, and once you have the chicken grilled, you can pop this together in just a few minutes. Cook the chicken ahead and just reheat, or keep some in your freezer to have ready to go.
Lemongrass Chicken Marinade:
- 1/4 cup brown sugar
- 1/4 cup water
- 1/4 cup fish sauce
- 1/4 cup rice vinegar
- 2 tbsp. peanut oil
- 2 tbsp. sesame oil
- 2 thai chiles, minced
- 1 stalk lemongrass, hammered, then cut into three inch lengths
- 1 pound boneless chicken breast
- 1 24-inch crusty French baguette
- 1/3 cup liver pate (optional)
- 1/3 cup thinly sliced English cucumber
- 1/3 cup finely grated carrot
- 1/3 cup grated daikon radish
- 1 cup mixed herbs: cilantro, sweet basil, mint
- 1 fresh jalapeno, thinly sliced
- Thai sweet chili and ginger sauce or Thai sweet chili sauce
- sambal oelek (optional)
- 3/4 cup nuoc cham sauce (recipe follows)
Spicy Nuoc Cham Sauce:
- 1/4 cup fish sauce
- 1/4 cup brown sugar or Splenda brown sugar blend
- 3/4 cup cold water
- 1/2 tsp. garlic paste
- 1 tsp. sriracha or sambal oelek sauce
- 1 tbsp. rice vinegar
- 2 tbsp. finely grated carrot
- Mix together marinade and pour over chicken that has been pounded out very thin.
- Marinate several hours or overnight.
- Drain chicken and grill over hot coals until cooked through, about 10-15 minutes. You may also choose to cook your chicken in the skillet or under the broiler, if you prefer.
- Place ingredients on split and toasted baguette and cut into three sandwiches.
- Serve sandwiches with nuoc cham sauce for dipping.
Makes: three sandwiches and one cup nuoc cham sauce
- 6-24 hours marination time
- 15 minutes grilling time
- 15 minutes to cut up ingredients
- 10 minute assembly time