Vegetarian Tet

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My wife and I had a party this past weekend to celebrate Tet (Vietnamese New Year), which is this Thursday. We served up vegetarian fare that included the pho I always talk about here, egg rolls and spring rolls, tofu triangles (fried and baked), a peanut satay made by our friend Kristy, and our “special” fortune cookies (special because we were having a heck of a time folding them properly, so we ended up making a hole in the middle and sticking the fortunes in, as seen here). Clean-up at the end of the night was really easy, as there was almost no food left. I take that to mean people enjoyed what we cooked. One person even made the kind comment that mine was the “best pho [they’d] ever tasted,” though the aforementioned Kristy said that my wife’s egg rolls “kicked [my] pho’s ass.” If I have to give up cooking glory to anyone, I prefer it’s my wife. :)

The baked tofu triangles came from an interesting source. When I was stocking up at a health food store near my work last week, the woman at the counter asked what I was going to make with the tofu I was buying. She told me that at a deli she used to work out, they had these baked sesame tofu triangles that sold out as quickly as they could make them. She gave me the gist of the recipe, I went home and tried it out just guessing on the amounts. It came out wonderfully on the first try, so I’m going to try and post the recipe here this week.

Apparently, in Chinese New Year celebrations, some people consider it bad luck to shed blood at the beginning of a new year, so they eat strictly vegetarian. Some us might say it’s bad luck to shed blood all year long, though, eh?

3 Responses to “Vegetarian Tet”

  1. lex

    how come when i click on pho it doesn’t take me anywhere special?

  2. bigoldgeek

    I made the pho and it was delish.
    I used thin rice noodles and recommend halving the noodle weight called for if you use these. Also, I upped the greens, basil, and seitan amounts to make a heartier soup.
    Do you have a good source for a clear veg stock recipe?

  3. Ryan

    In the interest of time, I usually just use a veggie powder to make the broth — the results are just as good, really, since most of the flavor comes from the spices you add afterwards. The “clear” part isn’t essential, I don’t think.

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