JavaScript is off. Please enable to view full site.

Vietnamese woman’s homemade meals gain online fame in France

Vietnamese woman’s homemade meals gain online fame in France

Tuesday, July 02, 2024, 10:51 GMT+7
Vietnamese woman’s homemade meals gain online fame in France
A meal containing malabar spinach soup, chicken wings fried in fish sauce, fried tofu with tomato sauce, and roasted peanuts, as prepared by Do Thuy Linh in France. Photo: Supplied

A Vietnamese woman’s pictures of homemade Vietnamese meals prepared for her family in France have garnered millions of likes from netizens impressed by the delicious and visually appealing dishes.

Do Thuy Linh, who resides in Toulouse City, often prepares delicious Vietnamese courses such as malabar spinach and dried shrimp soup, bamboo shoots and bone soup, chayote vines stir-fried with garlic, chicken stir-fried with lemongrass and chili, and boiled meat dipped in shrimp paste for her family. 

Linh’s meals, each priced under 10 euros for a family of two to three people, continue her culinary traditions from Vietnam while she lives in France.

“When I lived in Vietnam, I cherished the daily ritual of cooking and caring for meals,” Linh explained. 

“After moving to France with my husband, I’ve maintained the tradition of preparing Vietnamese dishes that evoke the flavors of my homeland.”

A meal containing bamboo shoot and bone soup, fried eggs with basil leaves, chayote vines stir-fried with garlic, and chicken stir-fried with lemongrass and chili prepared by Do Thuy Linh in France. Photo: Supplied

A meal including bamboo shoots and bone soup, fried eggs with basil leaves, chayote vines stir-fried with garlic, and chicken stir-fried with lemongrass and chili, as prepared by Do Thuy Linh in France. Photo: Supplied

Although Vietnamese cuisine is not a daily occurrence due to her husband’s preference for Western dishes, Linh’s family enjoys Vietnamese meals three to four times a week.

“Living far from my homeland, I don’t need fancy food or extravagant dishes,” Linh added. 

“Rice, soup, and vegetables are enough to make me crave.”

Linh finds it challenging to source Vietnamese ingredients in France, unlike her hometown in Vietnam where she could easily buy fresh produce from roadside markets. 

Supermarkets in France lack spices and herbs, prompting Linh to stockpile Vietnamese cooking essentials at home.

“The availability of Vietnamese vegetables in Western markets is rare, whereas Asian markets are quite far,” explained Linh, who recounted craving a bowl of sour fish soup but she did not have limnophila aromatica at home, which affected its flavor. 

“The nearest place to buy it is 30-40 minutes away."

A meal containing fried eggs with mugwort, fried pork belly with galangal, fermented rice and clausena indica leaves, boiled home-grown green beans, and minced meat and dracontomelon fruit soup prepared by Do Thuy Linh in France. Photo: Supplied

A meal containing fried eggs with mugwort, fried pork belly with galangal, fermented rice and clausena indica leaves, boiled home-grown green beans, and minced meat and dracontomelon fruit soup, as prepared by Do Thuy Linh in France. Photo: Supplied

Consequently, Linh decided to cultivate basic herbs at home, wash and freeze them, and meticulously store them in the refrigerator for weekly use.

She also adapted her meals to suit the ingredients available in France. 

Once, she used unsweetened yogurt instead of fermented rice for thịt lợn giả cầy (civet imitation pork). 

On another occasion, Linh yearned for bánh khúc (Vietnamese cudweed sticky rice balls), but cudweed was unavailable year-round. 

She quickly substituted kale, which turned out to be equally delicious.

A meal containing stir-fried water spinach, roasted dried baby shrimp, boiled meat dipped with shrimp sauce, and salted eggplant prepared by Do Thuy Linh in France. Photo: Supplied

A meal containing stir-fried water spinach, roasted dried baby shrimp, boiled meat dipped in shrimp sauce, and salted eggplant, as prepared by Do Thuy Linh in France. Photo: Supplied

“In France, chicken breasts are preferred over chicken thighs, making the former significantly more expensive,” Linh said. 

“Personally, I prefer chicken thighs, allowing me to save money on poultry purchases. 

“I also opt for older chickens when making phở [Vietnamese noodle soup with beef or chicken] or braised dishes -- while cheaper, they offer a chewy and flavorful experience. 

“I keep an eye on supermarket promotions to stock up on discounted items whenever possible.”

Do Thuy Linh in France. Photo: Supplied

Do Thuy Linh in France. Photo: Supplied

French keen on Vietnamese cuisine

Linh said that many French people show a keen interest in Vietnamese cuisine, particularly nem rán (spring rolls) and bún thịt nướng (noodles topped with grilled pork). 

She frequently invites French friends and relatives to her home to savor Vietnamese dishes.

During her father-in-law’s birthday celebration, some French guests who had traveled hundreds of kilometers joked that their visit was as much about enjoying the delicious Vietnamese food as it was about celebrating the occasion.

Linh’s husband often teases her, remarking on his good fortune to have a wife who cooks so well.

Having lived in France for five years, Linh continues the tradition of making bánh chưng (square sticky rice cakes filled with mung beans and pork) every Tết (Vietnamese Lunar New Year). 

Before, Linh had never made bánh chưng in Vietnam.

She embraced and maintained this tradition in France to stay connected to her homeland, bringing her great happiness and pride. 

Do Thuy Linh prepares ingredients to make ‘bánh chưng’ (square sticky rice cakes filled with mung beans and pork) in France. Photo: Supplied

Do Thuy Linh prepares ingredients to make ‘bánh chưng’ (square sticky rice cakes filled with mung beans and pork) in France. Photo: Supplied

Her Tết meal includes xôi gấc (sticky rice cooked with gac fruit), nem rán, bamboo shoot soup, kohlrabi salad, and Vietnamese steamed pork sausage, mirroring the traditional Tết dishes enjoyed by many in northern Vietnam.

“Through these Vietnamese meals, I aim to engage and discuss dishes and food prices in my local community,” Linh said.

“Wherever you go, Vietnamese cuisine holds a special place in the hearts of Vietnamese people. 

“Meals at home are particularly meaningful to me, as they express the cook’s love through each dish shared with family members. 

“For anyone who has grown up with family meals, there’s a sense of joy.”

Like us on Facebook or follow us on Twitter to get the latest news about Vietnam!

Bao Anh - Hien Anh / Tuoi Tre News

More

Read more

;

Photos

VIDEOS

‘Taste of Australia’ gala dinner held in Ho Chi Minh City after 2-year hiatus

Taste of Australia Gala Reception has returned to the Park Hyatt Hotel in Ho Chi Minh City's District 1 after a two-year hiatus due to the COVID-19 pandemic

Vietnamese woman gives unconditional love to hundreds of adopted children

Despite her own immense hardship, she has taken in and cared for hundreds of orphans over the past three decades.

Latest news

Football chaos as Paris Olympics kicks off

Israel's footballers later Wednesday took on Mali under the watchful eye of 1,000 police officers, with authorities erecting an 'anti-terrorist perimeter' and braced for possible disruption around the stadium