Lemongrass Pork Bánh Mì narrow display Lemongrass Pork Bánh Mì wide display

Lemongrass Pork Bánh Mì

by Brava Chef Travis


Servings 2 sandwiches
Active Time:
~45 min
Total Time:
~56 min

About this Recipe

Bánh mì, or Vietnamese sandwiches, became a popular street food in Saigon during the 1950s. Fun fact: French occupation introduced the baguette to Vietnam in the mid-19th century. The classic sandwich is a crispy baguette stuffed with pate (another French import) and roasted meats, garnished with pickles, cilantro and jalapeño slices. Brava Chef Travis’s introduction to bánh mì came when he was a young culinary student in the early 2000s. San Francisco’s Tenderloin neighborhood is home to Saigon Sandwich - consistently rated the best bánh mì in The City. If you find yourself on Larkin Street and see a line out the door, chances are that’s Saigon Sandwich. There are an endless array of fillings - roasted pork, pate, 5-spice chicken, etc. - but Chef Travis skipped the pate and used lemongrass marinated pork for this version. The pickles and marinade are adapted from Andrea Ngyuen’s Into the Vietnamese Kitchen cookbook.


Make pickles

  • In medium bowl, toss together carrot, daikon, salt and 2 teaspoons sugar and rest at room temperature for about 20 minutes to expel excess water.
  • After 20 minutes, drain and rinse carrots and daikon in colander; transfer to 2-quart storage container.
  • In medium bowl, whisk together remaining sugar, vinegar and water; stir until sugar dissolves.
  • Pour brine over vegetables, cover and refrigerate for at least an hour.
  • Pickles can be stored refrigerated for up to 4 weeks.


Marinate pork

  • Combine shallot, garlic, brown sugar, salt and peppercorns in mortar (or food processor) and pound to a paste.
  • Add shrimp sauce (if using), fish sauce, vegetable oil and lemongrass; stir well.
  • Toss pork with marinade and refrigerate for at least one hour (or up to 24 hours).


Toast baguette rolls

  • Place baguette rolls in Zones 1, 2 and 3 of Brava metal tray.
  • Slide metal tray into bottom shelf and press green button to begin toasting for 3 minutes 30 seconds.
  • When Brava notifies you, remove rolls and set aside.


Cook pork

  • Spread pork evenly on Zones 1, 2 and 3 of Brava metal tray.
  • Slide metal tray into top shelf and press green button to begin cooking.


Assemble sandwiches

  • Meanwhile, slit bread lengthwise, making sure you don’t cut all the way through.
  • Spread some mayonnaise on both sides of bread and drizzle with a few shakes of Maggi Seasoning sauce.
  • Layer sandwiches with pork, cucumber, cilantro sprigs, jalapeño and pickles.
  • Cut sandwiches in half crosswise and serve.