A traditional Banh Mi is a Vietnamese sandwich made with pork and a lot of fish sauce. Well I totally omitted the fish sauce. No thanks...yuck! It worked out great with my substitutions.
I am so in love with this sandwich. I had it a few weeks ago at a small bakery that is totally organic and only uses the freshest ingredients. I dream of this place because it was that good.
I must go back. It's worth the hour drive west. So I had to make it. What I like about this sandwich is there is no cheese, it's not really slathered in sauce and the crunch of the pickled cucumber and carrots is just so good!
For the Chicken
1/2 cup Ponzu Sauce
1 cup fresh lime juice
1/2 cup sugar
8 garlic cloves, minced
4 red Thai chiles, thinly sliced
1 tablespoon kosher salt
6 skinless, boneless chicken breast halves
For the Pickled Vegetables
1/2 cup water
1/4 cup rice vinegar
1/4 cup sugar
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
Pinch of crushed red pepper
2 large carrots, sliced into ribbons
1 whole seedless cucumber sliced into ribbons
For the Aioli
1/3 cup regular or low-fat mayonnaise
1 tablespoon Thai chili paste, such as Sriracha
1 teaspoon freshly squeezed lime juice
1 clove garlic, minced
For the Banh Mi
Four 8-inch baguettes, split
1/4 cup of the Aioli
8 large cilantro sprigs
Directions for the chicken
In a bowl, whisk the ponzu with the lime juice, sugar, garlic, Thai chiles and salt. Put the chicken in a resealable plastic bag. Seal the bag and refrigerate the chicken for at least 3 hours.
Light a grill. Remove the chicken from the marinade and pat dry. Grill the chicken over moderate heat, turning once, until just cooked through, about 14 minutes. Transfer to cutting board and let rest for 5 minutes.
Directions for the Vegetables
In a small saucepan, bring the water, vinegar, sugar, salt and crushed red pepper to a boil. Transfer the brine to a large bowl and let cool to room temperature. Add the carrots and cucumber and cover to keep them submerged. Refrigerate the vegetables for at least 30 minutes and up to 3 days.
Directions for the Aioli
Whisk together the mayonnaise, Thai chili paste, lime juice, and garlic in a small bowl.
For the assembly of the Banh Mi
Drain the pickled vegetables.
Pull and shred the chicken breasts into 1-2 inch pieces
Spread the cut sides of the baguettes with aioli. Place with the chicken on the bottom and top with pickled carrots and cucumber.
Garnish with the cilantro sprigs.
Close the sandwiches and serve.
*Shared with Fantastic Thursday, Full Plate Thursday, Foodie Friday, Weekend Potluck, Weekend Wonders, Totally Tasty Tuesdays, All My Bloggy Friends, Share Your Stuff Tuesday, Tuesday Talent Show