Have you ever had a Vietnamese Banh Mi sandwich? If you haven’t, then you have one more thing to add to your bucket list. I had mine for the first time this year on a business trip to Kentucky of all places. It was recommended by one of my colleagues. She was getting it and I wanted to be an adventurous team player so I went for it. Unbelievable! Glad I did. Never be afraid to try new things. If it’s gross you can always politely refuse to take a second bite but you just never know when you will find something you’ll absolutely enjoy. Travel the world and collect flavors like souvenirs. We’re using all the flavors of Banh Mi to make pizza. Banh Mi Pizza! Worlds are colliding here!
Banh Mi is loosely translated as bread or baguette. Typical Banh Mi sandwiches are usually compiled of pork belly or cold cuts, pickled veggies, spicy sauce and sometimes the richness of a fried egg. Why would you ever refuse a fried egg?? You know where I stand on this! The restaurant where I first tried this delicious sandwich served theirs with grilled shrimp and paté, adding a whole new level to the richness factor. The main common theme is great bread and pickled veggies with a little spice.
One of our favorite dinners to make together is pizza so this time we decided to recreate the flavors of the traditional Bahn Mi onto our pizza. For my friends who need five ingredients or less, sorry this is a bit lengthy and involved. I promise you’ll be happy you took the time.
Banh Mi Pizza
I did some research to see if anyone else has ever had this same craving. I’m not alone. This recipe is adapted from one I found at Half Baked Harvest.
- 1 home made pizza dough or store-bought pizza dough OR use Naan
- 1/4 cup soy sauce
- 2 tablespoons sesame oil
- 2 tablespoons honey
- 1-2 tablespoons fish sauce
- 1-2 tablespoons Sriracha
- juice of half a lime
- 1 tablespoon fresh lemongrass, finely chopped
- 1/2 pound ground pork or chicken
- 1/3 cup each – fresh basil and cilantro, chopped
- 8 ounces fresh mozzarella, shredded
- 3-4 eggs (optional)
note: If you’re feeling adventurous try adding a few grilled shrimp and a few ounces of duck liver paté to one of your pizzas instead of the meatballs.
- 2 carrots, shredded
- 1 cucumber, thinly sliced
- 4 radishes, thinly sliced
- 1 red Fresno chile or jalapeño, seeded+ sliced
- 1/3 cup (total for both together) fresh basil + cilantro, roughly chopped
- 2 teaspoons peanut or sesame oil toasted sesame seeds, for topping
- 1/3 cup tahini (sesame seed paste)
- 1-2 tablespoons Sriracha juice of half a lime
- water, to thin the sauce
- Prepare your dough or naan and make sure it is warm or at room temperature.
- In a small bowl, whisk together the soy sauce, sesame oil, honey, fish sauce, sriracha, lime juice and lemongrass, set aside.
- Season the pork with salt and pepper and then roll into 10-15 meatballs, place each meatball on a tray as you work.
- Heat a large skillet over medium heat and cook the meatballs until cooked through, about 5 minutes, turning them 2-3 times throughout cooking.
- During the last minute or so of cooking, add about 1/4 cup of soy sauce mixture and give the meatballs a good toss through the sauce. Cook another minute longer until the sauce glazes the meatballs. Remove from the heat.
- Preheat the oven to 450° F.
- Once the pizza dough is ready, lightly flour a counter. Divide the dough into 2 balls (or make one large sheet pizza).
- Use your hands or a rolling pin to roll the dough out until you have a flattened disk.
- Place the pizzas on a greased, parchment lined baking sheet and then use your hands to gently tug, pull and push the pizza dough into your desired shape.
- If needed, trim the parchment paper down so just about an inch overhangs from the sides.
- Brush the soy sauce mixture over the dough, leaving any leftovers for serving.
- Add the mozzarella cheese and cooked meatballs.
- Now crack the eggs over the cheese, sprinkle with salt and pepper…and maybe a little more cheese.
- Bake 15-25 minutes or until the cheese is melted and the egg has cooked to your liking.
- Meanwhile, combine the carrots, cucumber, radishes, green onions, chile pepper, cilantro and basil in a bowl.
- Toss with sesame or peanut oil and the juice of half a lime. Set aside until the pizza is ready.
- Once the pizza has cooked, remove from the oven and top with the fresh veggies. Sprinkle with sesame seeds and drizzle with the sriracha “mayo” (recipe below).
Slice and Enjoy!
- In a bowl, whisk together the tahini, sriracha and lime juce.
- Add water until the sauce is runny enough to drizzle over the pizza.
- Taste and adjust seasonings as needed.
- Sauce will keep for at least 2 weeks in the fridge.
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