|Perm’s drawings to describe plating, Thai sweet corn fritters (tapioca flour is the secret), performer at the event.|
Uyen Leluu was born in Vietnam and came from a refugee camp to the UK at the age of five. She was brought up in Hackney when it was rough not trendy, not far from the old Vietnamese community centre cafe on Englefield Road, one of the original Vietnamese restaurants which sparked a flourishing food scene in that part of London, now known as Little Vietnam. Up till now, Vietnamese in the UK went into three industries: nails, clothing manufacture or food. Today, second and third generation Vietnamese are encouraged by their parents to become doctors. Uyen started out as a fashion designer with her own shop in Carnaby street. Towards the end of 2009 she started a supper club in her London Fields home; since then her career seems destined to remain in food. Jamie Oliver has been to her supper club (well jell!) and she’s recieved good reviews both in the UK and internationally for her authentic Vietnamese cooking.
Poonperm Paitayawat or ‘Perm’ is known in the food world as author of the blog The Skinny Bib (a reference to the Michelin ‘bib gourmande’) and is Thai, of Chinese extraction. He came to Britain to study theatre history. He turned up yesterday with an intriguing basket of ingredients: small booklets of Thai gold leaf and a large box of Rice krispies.
Perm and Uyen worked together quietly and efficiently, the kitchen has never been so calm. The food they produced was delicious. I learnt from Uyen about a particular combination of herbs, perilla, a kind of Shiso leaf and Cockscomb, a mint lemon balm leaf only sold in Vietnamese supermarkets in Hackney. Uyen runs Vietnamese cookery classes.
“khao pod tod” – sweet corn fritters with sweet chilli sauce
“miang tuna” – sour and spicy salad of cooked tinned tuna served on fresh baby gem lettuce.
“plar plaa salmon” – Thai -style salmon ceviche
Vietnamese BBQ Chargrilled pork belly with cold vermilcelli noodle salad
“kao nhiew piak lum-yai” – syrupy sticky (black) rice pudding with coconut flesh and longan.
185g high quality chunky tuna in spring water
3 very fresh baby gem lettuces
2 sprigs of coriander, chopped
1 fat clove of garlic, minced
2 birds eye chillis, chopped
1 spring onion, finely sliced
2-3 limes, juiced
2 tbs sunflower seed oil
1 tbs quality soy sauce
2tbs quality fish sauce
1 tsp sugar
1/2 tsp salt
Heat the oil in a saucepan or wok. Drain and add the tuna. Season with fish sauce, soy sauce, sugar and salt. Stir-fry until the liquid evaporates. the cooked tuna mixture should border on being a little salty. Leave to cool down.
Mix coriander, spring onion, garlic, bird’s eye chilli with lime juice. Add the room temperature tuna and toss. Season with extra salt or lime juice to taste. Serve spooned over an individual leaf of baby gem lettuce.
|Uyen and Perm who after soaking the skewers, threaded on the pork; Uyen’s main course; herbs used in Vietnamese cookery.|
|Perm with his gorgeous gold leafed tuna canapés; salmon ceviche|
|Perm’s pudding ingredients|