Little Saigon Cuisine

Appears in

Little Saigon Cookbook: Vietnamese Cuisine And Culture In Southern California's Little Saigon

Little Saigon Cookbook

By Ann Le

Published 2011

  • About

Bona fide Vietnamese food—the kind you can always count on finding in Little Saigon—is simple and traditional, yet it also satisfies the adventurous food lover. It is characterized by a balance of understated flavors emphasizing freshness, while its uniqueness lies in its essential ingredients—above all, fish sauce and fresh herbs and vegetables. Vietnamese flavors are deep, yet subtle and not as heavy and rich as Thai or Indian foods. The cuisine is known for its delicate and healthful dishes, many of which are vegetarian. There is a healthy reliance on steamed rice, and steaming in general is very popular. Meat and fish are not often considered Main courses, but simply one part of the family’s evening meal. Vietnamese food uses little oil; we prefer to sauté foods in their own juices rather than adding more oil. Even dipping sauces and salad dressings are citrus-based.