Banh mi is really the perfectly balanced sandwich. It has salty meat (there are tofu versions but I don’t think the tofu adds anything), crunchy veg, pickled veg, creamy mayo, fresh herbs, and a good banh mi is made with a good baguette. I won’t name names, but I’ve tried a banh mi with a fluffy, whole grainy baguette and it just wasn’t right – the baguette has to be the thin with crunchy crust and a spongy inside – french style.
For my version, I wanted to use local, smoked duck breast, or magret de canard, that I found in Main Street Farm market and cafe (pictured above). And for the sauce, I mixed hoisin sauce and mayonnaise and heavily slathered both sides of the baguette. You have to taste all of the things in every bite, so don’t hold back on the toppings. This would be a fun dinner or brunch party food: prepare the fixins’ ahead of time, lay them out and have a make-your-own-banh mi-party. And in honor of the French influence, I would serve it with a dry white Bordeaux. Or ice cold Tiger beer would work too. Cocinamos!
- Smoked duck breast, sliced thin (try the Magret de Canard from Larchmont Charcuterie)
- 1 french baguette
- 1/2 cucumber, julienned
- 1 carrot, julienned
- 5 radishes, julienned or sliced paper thin
- 1 handful cilantro
- lime, quartered
- mayonnaise + hoisin mixture (1:1 ratio)
- 1 teaspoon table salt
- 2 teaspoons white sugar
- Pickle your cucumber and radishes! Put each in a separate bowl and add 1/2 of the salt and sugar. Let sit for fifteen minutes, rinse, then refrigerate until ready to use.*
- Slice your baguette in half and toast. Meanwhile, rinse thoroughly and dry cilantro.
- Then just layer on the toppings. Don’t be bashful.
* Thanks to i am a food blog for the pickle recipe!