In dishes of Chinese origin, the egg
noodles are used instead of rice noodles. For this popular dish, the
Vietnamese prefer to use thin Shanghai-style noodles, which are available
only in Chinese and Asian markets, but fortunately it does work with other
varieties of egg noodle too. Serve with a simple salad or pickled
Fresh egg noodles
Vegetable oil, plus extra for brushing
Fresh root ginger, peeled and cut into matchsticks
Spring onions (scallions), trimmed and cut into bite-size pieces
Carrot, peeled and cut into thin, diagonal slices
Scallops (halved if large)
Baby squid, cut in half lengthways
Tiger shrimps, shelled and deveined
Ground black pepper
Fresh coriander (cilantro) leaves, for garnishing
Nuoc cham , to serve
Bring a large pan of water to the boil.
Drop in the noodles, untangling them with chopsticks or a fork.
Cook for about 5 minutes, or until tender.
Drain thoroughly and spread the noodles
out into a wide, thick pancake on an oiled plate. Leave to dry out a
little, so that the pancake holds its shape.
Heat 30 ml oil in a non-stick, heavy pan.
Carefully slide the noodle pancake off the plate into the pan and cook
over a medium heat until it is crisp and golden underneath.
Add a little extra oil to the pan, flip
the noodle pancake over and crisp the other side too.
While the noodle pancake is cooking, heat
a wok or heavy pan and add the oil. Stir in the ginger and spring
onions, and cook until they become fragrant. Add the carrot slices,
tossing them in the wok, for 1-2 minutes.
Add the scallops, squid and shrimps,
moving them around the wok, so that they sear while cooking.
Stir in the nuoc mam, soy sauce and sugar.
Season well with black pepper.
Transfer the crispy noodle pancake to a
serving dish and tip the seafood on top.
Garnish with coriander and serve
To eat, break off pieces of the
seafood-covered noodle pancake and drizzle with nuoc cham.
You can usually ask your fishmonger to
prepare the squid, but to prepare squid yourself, get a firm hold of the
head and pull it from the body. Reach down inside the body sac and pull
out the transparent back bone, as well as any stringy parts. Rinse the
body sac inside and out and pat dry. Cut the tentacles off above the
eyes and add to the pile of squid you're going to cook. Discard