Bun cha

Bun cha

This Bun Cha recipe I’m sharing today is a simple home version that’s a style more familiar to those of us outside of Vietnam. The flavour was spot on, but it was prepared in a different way.

In order to simplify this recipe and make it suitable for a weeknight dinner, I omitted the pork belly and served the noodles and sauce in individual bowls, rather than in the traditional "soup" format. The Noodle Bowl style of serving Vietnamese food is becoming increasingly popular in Sydney, particularly among people who eat lunch at work.

Why do people like Bun cha

Bun cha being enjoyed
The nation's capital city, is known for its traditional pork dish known as bun cha. bun cha is considered a specialty. Rice noodles, fresh vegetables and herbs are served in a broth with seasoned pork patties, which I refer to as squished meatballs. Also included in the dish are pork belly slices that have been caramelised.

Vietnamese food with authentic tastes and flavours

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Ingredients that go into Bun cha


  • 1 lb ground pork
  • 1 lb pork shoulder (slice thin against the grain)
  • 3 tablespoons fish sauce
  • 2 tablespoons oyster sauce
  • 2 teaspoons homemade caramel cooking sauce (Nuoc Mau) or
  • 1/2 teaspoon thick soy sauce
  • 1 tablespoon chicken stock powder or
  • vegetable stock powder
  • 2 tablespoons granulated sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground pepper
  • 1/4 cup minced lemongrass
  • 1 tablespoon minced garlic

Other Ingredients

Assorted vegetables (lettuce, bean sprouts, mint, perilla, and/or sliced cucumber)

  • 2 bags rice vermicelli (Jiang Xi rice stick or Bun Giang Tay)
  • Pickled daikon and carrot (optional)
  • Sweet Chili Papaya Dipping Sauce
  • 2 cups sliced unripe green papaya
  • 2 teaspoons salt
  • 1 cup hot water
  • 3/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 3/4 cup fish sauce
  • 3 tablespoons lime juice (1 fresh lime)
  • 2 cups coconut soda (Coco Rico)
  • 6 minced garlic cloves
  • 2 Thai chili peppers (slice thin)

How to cook Bun cha

  1. Fish sauce, oyster sauce, caramel cooking sauce/thick soy sauce, pork/vegetable stock powder, sugar, ground pepper, lemongrass, and garlic are the ingredients that should be combined to make the marinade for the pork. Combine thoroughly. Pork shoulder slices and ground pork should each receive their own portion of the marinade. For enhanced flavour, pork should be marinated for at least half an hour and up to 24 hours in the refrigerator.
  2. Make a few hamburger patties out of the ground pork.
  3. For a taste that is closer to the original, sear the pork slices and burger patties over a charcoal fire. You may also choose to bake them in the oven at a temperature of 400 degrees Fahrenheit for about ten minutes. Be sure to flip and rotate the food so that it cooks evenly.
  4. Mix the sliced papaya with the salt in a small bowl so that it can be used to make the dipping sauce. Let sit for at least 30 minutes. Remove the salt by rinsing it off in a stream of cold water and then squeezing out any excess liquid. Drain thoroughly, then set to the side. In a bowl of about medium size, combine the water and sugar and stir until the sugar is dissolved. Fish sauce, lime juice, coconut soda, garlic, and chilli peppers should be added to the dish. Add sliced papaya to sauce.
  5. Prepare the noodles in accordance with the directions on the package.
  6. When you're ready to serve, put a single portion of the meat in a low-sided bowl. The meat should be topped with the sweet papaya chilli sauce. Rice noodles and a platter of freshly prepared vegetables and herbs from Vietnam should be served on the side.

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Qwang’s Rice Noodle Salad bowls are great for corporate lunches or group meals at the office. Coupled with our chilled Vietnamese coffee and you’ve got yourself a complete “happy” meal for everyone!

What can Bun cha be served together with

Bun cha served

The noodles, vegetables, and herbs are all supposed to be dunked in the broth. This is the plan. So you dip, you slurp noodles, you bite into juicy pork, and you try to cram a few sprigs of herbs into your mouth – and that moment when you succeed, when you get a mouthful that has a bit of everything...

Other popular Vietnamese food

Besides Bun cha, there are other vietnamese food dishes that are highly popular in Singapore and around the world. Below is a list of some of the most mentioned ones:

Pho, Cha Ca, Banh Xeo, Cao Lau, Rau Muong, Nem Ran Cha Gio, Goi Cuon, Bun Bo Hue, Banh Khot, Ga Tan, Nom Hoa Chuoi, Hoa Qua Dam, Pho Cuon, Ga Nuong, Pho Xao, Ca Phe Trung, Bo La Lot, Xoi, Banh Cuon, Ca Tim Kho To, Bot Chien, Bun Dau Mam Tom, Banh Goi, Com Suon Nuong, Chao, Bo Luc Lac, Hat De Nong, Banh Uot thit nuong, Bun Cha, Banh Mi, Lau, Banh Bao, Com rang, Bo Bit Tet, Com Chay, Che, My Xao Bo, Dau Phu Sot Ca Chua, Canh Bun

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