A Gastronomic Tour of Vietnam

Happy Saturday!

In my previous post I was bored out of my mind. However, now I have very little free time now since I started my job. Eh, you win some, you lose some.

A few weeks ago a friend and I went to a Vietnamese restaurant called “Mykha’s.” (I however, thought it was a “Thai” restaurant and proceeded to tell everyone before I went that I was going to a Thai restaurant. Ooops.)

Once I learned that it was really a Vietnamese restaurant, I got even more excited, since I’ve never really eaten Vietnamese food. I did, however, do a research project on Vietnam in grade school. We had to bring in food from that country; I brought in lychee nuts.

Click for source

It was my first experience with lychees. They were delicious. Kind of like a grape. (And they taste great in bubble tea.)

I digress.

Everything on the menu looked delicious, especially since there were full-out vegetarian menu items, which never, ever happens. I became utterly confused about the array of choices. Sometimes less is more, my friends.

Luckily, my dining companion loves to eat. And by “loves to eat,” I mean he would probably order every single item off the menu and then demolish them. So we started with two salads:

Heirloom Tomato Salad

It was one of the daily specials, and included chunks of beautiful heirloom tomatoes, almonds, spring greens, and the house lime vinaigrette, which was out of this world.

Waterfall Salad

This included mixed greens, orange segments, apples, an unidentified fruit (we were leaning along the lines of green papaya), lime vinaigrette, almonds, cranberries, and this great spice mixture.

The combo of sweet and salty and heat in all the dishes reminded me of this Mexican candy:

Click for source

It’s a tamarind paste that reminiscent of a Push-Ups popsicle; you have to push the bottom of the container to get the paste to come out the top like “hair.” It’s an odd concept… It tastes sweet and salty at the same time, but then you get a kick of heat. The flavor is a little hard to describe, but it’s delicious!

(But while we’re on the topic of Mexican candy, my all time favorite Mexican candy is goat’s milk candy. I can’t find a decent picture of it, but it basically looks like marzipan, only tastes different. But you probably didn’t care, haha. Enjoy the following picture instead.)

Yes, this is truly how I feel. (click for source)

Back to Mykha’s.

For my entree, I got the Waterfall Tofu, aka Deliciousness-on-a-Plate.

Look at that beautiful garnish.

That’s what I especially love about ethnic cuisines; you can tell that they always take their time when preparing the food and with the presentation. American restaurants do try to pay attention to “plating,” but I’ve never seen radishes carved as flowers on my plate in the typical American restaurant.

Oh. Hey. Sunburn.

What could this be?

I was quite intrigued by the large, crispy thing on the side of my plate. It resembled a lemon-poppyseed cracker (not that I’ve ever had that or anything). I asked what it was and was told that it was a a fried cracker made out of rice and black sesame seeds. I used it to scoop up some of my entree, and  the balance between everything was perfect. I could wax poetic about it, but I want to refrain sounding like a snobby food critic (I’m looking at you, Jeffrey Steingarten).

Then came time for dessert. Being the person he is, my friend wanted to order two separate desserts and then share. We chose the passionfruit sorbet and the chocolate mousse cake.

What you can’t see are the passionfruit seeds in the sorbet. They added a nice textural contrast with their “crunch, crunch.”

I had my reservations about ordering chocolate mousse cake, as I don’t like chocolate mousse (I know, I know, I’m really picky. And that’s probably an understatement), but this was more dense and fudgey than mousse-like.

I would definitely go back again. Especially if someone else paid for it. (My wallet it hurting a little.) Any takers?

My friend and I, after accosting someone in the middle of the street to take our picture.

What’s your favorite type of ethnic cuisine? Or what’s your favorite non-American candy?

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One thought on “A Gastronomic Tour of Vietnam

  1. Everything looks soo, so good. The waterfall salad sounds awesome – of course, I adore sweet and spicy meals!
    …I don’t recall ever having non-American candy! I probably have, just don’t realize it, though 😛

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