Dara Moskowitz Grumdahl's Banh Mi Sandwich Recipes

Twin Cities has been having a love affair with these Vietnamese/French Sandwiches

Off The Menu with Dara Grumdahl
June 15, 2018 - 9:51 am

Off the Menu with Dara can be heard every Saturday from 11 a.m. to noon on News Radio 830 WCCO! See all of Mpls. St.Paul Magazine’s Dara Moskowitz Grumdahl's Top 5 lists here!

The Banh Mi sandwich is what evolved during the French occupation of Vietnam during the 19th and early 20th centuries, when Vietnam was called French Indochina. The sandwich is basically a baguette with mayo and paté, further stuffed with Vietnamese ingredients like pickled shredded daikon and cilantro. I’d say it’s the perfect fusion food, and the Twin Cities has been having a love affair with the sandwiches for a good twenty years.  People flood banh mi shops like Lu’s and iPho, and nicer restaurants such as Ngon Bistro and Vellee Deli tinker with the form. But you can make all kinds of banh mi at home—and you should! Here’s how.

Chicken Liver Paté for Banh Mi
To my mind, the chicken liver paté on the banh mi sandwich sort of makes it—and is worth making on its own to serve with crackers. It’s not hard!  And it’s so healthy. Eat your liver! 

Mayonnaise for Banh Mi
A lot of arguing goes on about the mayo in a banh mi. Many people use Kewpie, the Japanese mayo that’s pretty widely available here. Some people use Hellman’s or Miracle Whip, maybe with a little mustard to give it some tang. But if you really want to do it right you could make your own, with a little mustard and a lot of lemon juice.

American Banh Mi-style Ham Sandwich 
If you’re not ready to go full banh mi, you can just make a little cucumber, cilantro, jalapeno and lime relish to put on your ham sandwich – it’s very simple, and fun. This is not a banh mi, but a ham sandwich with a nod towards banh mi, and quite good. 

Rotisserie Chicken Weeknight banh mi recipe 
If you get a big loaf of bread and tear up a whole chicken and make a giant sandwich—that’s a nice patio dinner for a crowd! Goes well with a good pilsner or other light American lawnmower beer—I’m super in to that Summit Lazy Sipper right now, a perfect post-lawnmowing brew. 

Grilled Pork Banh Mi
I bring to you the real deal intimidating multi-step grilled pork banh mi—I say read the recipe and take key elements away. Otherwise that’s too much cooking when a banh mi just costs like five bucks. 

Lemongrass Tofu Banh Mi 
Vegetarian banh mi do exist—and they’re good to have around for the vegetarians in your life. I’ve had some saucy curry hot banh mi too, so that’s an option. 
Meatball banh mi 
My son entered the world of banh mi through meatball, so a good meatball sub banh mi will forever hold a soft spot in my heart.