on March 31, 2007
I got this book for my birthday and I didn't even request it, and I must say, it is a GREAT book. I've fallen in love with vietnamese food, through pho and bun and banh mi, and this book contains all those recipes and more. It explains the history on this whole culinary world, and has detailed descriptions and pictures to help you identify ingredients and understand them. That way, you can go shopping with a little bit more ease and you'll have the vietnamese names available when you need the help. I was able to get the ingredients I needed when the shop lady couldn't understand what I wanted since I wrote the vietnamese names (accents and everything)of them and I just showed them to her. There are also tips and notes on techniques and substitutions. There is also explanations on how to eat and live this different culinary experience. I learned a ton of stuff. And everything is so easy and fresh, it's really nice and fun to do something new and not have to go to a restaurant for it. There's even a section on vietnamese charcuteries (cold cuts, if you will) so that you can make your own banh mi ! So if you love vietnamese food or are just curious, and you need something that will walk you through it and not frustrate the heck out of you, I reccommend this book. It should be part of every cookbook library.
on July 19, 2012
I tried a few recipes and they were all exactly as I expected. I am Vietnamese and have found the flavor to be authentic and very delicious. The instructions are detailed, precise and easy to follow. I would have loved to see a picture for each recipe, as noted by other reviewer; but all in all, it's a great book.