Coco-Lemongrass Vermicelli Shrimp Bowl is a light and easy dish for the summertime, filled with a rainbow of crunchy veggies, coco-lemongrass shrimps on a small bed of vermicelli rice noodles.
Summertime is sometimes painful… especially when you don’t have AC and live in Spain… It’s too hot to make tartar… too scared of making the fish turn bad as soon as it hits the infernal sun, and too hot for any long cooking sessions… Solution: the Wok! I love my wok, I like to work with it especially in the summertime to sauté food in no time. It’s so fast to cook with it, it won’t have time to warm up the house.
The main idea here is to make a protein, whether it’s shrimps, chicken or tofu and sauté it rapidly in oil and lemongrass, than let it simmer for an extra minute in coconut milk for an ultra rapid and ultra aromatic protein! The rest (veggies toppings) are up to you, take your favorites and keep them raw, you’ll get a nice crunch and a whole lot more vitamins from it. Too hot to eat warm stuff anyway…
The video I’ve made contain a few elements you might wonder about… I can not fit in all the explanations about each action I do in there so… here it is:
- Defrosting Shrimps in cold water, some might already know it, but a perfectly safe and fast way to unfreeze shrimps is under running cold water for about 10 minutes… the exact time it’s going to take you to prepare the veggies…. no time lost here!
- While the shrimps drain their excess water in a strainer, add a touch of “Nước chấm” or “Vietnamese Fish Sauce”, this is equivalent to salt, it will give the shrimps ultra lots of sea flavor and get rid of that sometimes “fishy” note from unfrozen shrimps… *I would like to point out “make sure to buy the Vietnamese Fish sauce… not the others” because it’s done with actual fishes and the other kinds are some mix of squids which is totally different…
- Cooking the shrimps in whether peanut oil or coconut oil and adding the lemongrass and the optional Makrut lime leaves to the sauté helps to bring out the aroma rapidly. Because it won’t be cooking long, make sure to break the lemongrass and makrut leaves to help them release all their flavor in no time.
- For most… Vermicelli rice noodles are done following the pack’s instructions… but I personally always do them the same way… leaving them in warm water until soft, drain, rinse in cold water… this way it helps them get bouncy and unsticky. I also add a tad of sesame oil and fish sauce (a few drops only) to give it extra flavor and gloss. But this step is optional.
Oh! and an extra note: Fish Sauce is your new salt when cooking South Eastern Asian dishes… I personally use it instead of salt, it gives an extra “sea” flavor to everything and no worries… it doesn’t taste “fishy” although it’s called “Fish Sauce”. It’s truly the “secret” ingredient to Vietnamese cuisine!
So let’s make this summer bowl!
Coco-Lemongrass Vermicelli Shrimp Bowl
Makes 2 portions | Preparation: 20 minutes | Difficulty: easy-breezy
- 250ml of coconut milk
- ≈185g of shrimps
- 125g of vermicelli rice noodles
- Vietnamese Fish Sauce
- 2 carrots cut into small sticks (juliennes)
- 1/4 of a bell pepper cut into small sticks (juliennes)
- 2 hands of sprouts
- 2-3 scallions finely chopped
- 2 makrut lime leaves
- 2 lemongrass
- crushed peanuts
- peanut or coconut oil
- sesame oil *optional
- Unfreeze the shrimps under running cold water for 10 minutes
- During that time cut all the veggies and crushed the peanuts, reserve
- Bring to a boil the water for the noodles and stop the fire and let the vermicelli soak in there for 5 minutes or until tender, drain and rinse in cold water
- Add a few drops of sesame oil and fish oil to the vermicelli, mix and reserve
- In a wok, high heat, add the peanut oil, the shrimps, the lemongrass broken into two and the broken makrut lime leaves and sauté for 2 minutes
- Add the coconut milk and lower the heat to simmer for another 2 minutes (check seasonning, add fish sauce for more salt)
- Assemble the bowls, vermicelli first then, add the shrimps and its coconut broth, fill with the veggies, peanuts, lime wedge and cilantro.