This is a beauty, now a classic, and one that you should really know. Everything is set out on the table, then each person chopsticks some noodles into their bowl, piles on the dilled fish, herb leaves and some peanuts and then spills over a little nuoc cham. If you’re non-plussed about the DIY scheme of things, serve it all assembled in bowls.
Pound together the garlic, galangal and turmeric to make a paste - or crush and finely grate, then mix together. Toss the fish with the fish sauce, a touch of salt, some pepper, the chilli and sugar, then toss through the paste, until the fish is evenly coated and leave, covered and refrigerated, for a good 2 hours or overnight.
Heat a heavy frying pan - something cast-iron is just the job - until smoking hot, then pour in about
© 2004 Alastair Hendy. All rights reserved.