Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Canh Xà Lách Son (Vietnamese Watercress Soup)

I really love canh. What is canh? It's the Vietnamese term for soup. Most Vietnamese meals never go without any canh. It accompanies rice and the main dishes. You can have canh as a side, or I sometimes scoop some canh into my bowl of rice. What's great about canh is that it's actually quite simple to make. It's usually a basic soup and so doesn't require many ingredients. One can make a canh with only a vegetable, a protein, some salt and water. It's a great way to try and taste new vegetables!

It's common to make canh out of greens and one canh that my mom makes is canh xà lách son, xà lách son being watercress. I like watercress in its raw form in salads, but it's pretty tasty cooked too. Try it out!

Watercress Soup

Canh Xà Lách Son (Vietnamese Watercress Soup)
This soup can be made in under 15 minutes.

* oil
* 1 Tbsp very finely diced onion
* 1-2 Tbsp ground pork
* salt and pepper, to taste
* watercress, washed and cut in 3" sections (I just use scissors)
* 2 cups water

In a small pot, heat up oil.
Add onion and pork.
Season with salt and pepper.
Once the pork is cooked through, add 2 cups of water
Add the watercress.
Bring the water to a boil.
Turn off.
Taste and adjust seasoning to taste.

Ground Pork Watercress
Ground pork and watercress.

Watercress Soup
Canh xà lách son - Vietnamese watercress soup.

Other canh recipes:
* Canh Khổ Qua (Bitter Melon Soup)
* Canh Hến (Baby Clam Soup)

Saturday, April 2, 2011

Kazu (Montréal)

1862 Rue Ste-Catherine Ouest
Montréal, Québec

On a quick visit to Montréal, my sister and I dropped by Kazu. She'd been raving about this izikaya and I really wanted to try their ramen (because I have never tried ramen before...). Since Kazu only offers ramen at lunch time we dropped by at noon, and it was quite packed with a business crowd. We were able to squeeze onto two chairs by the counter.

Kazu View from the counter
Kazu and view from our counter seats.

The lunch menu wasn't very extensive, with about 10 offerings. My sister wanted to try something that was only available at dinner time, so she stuck to her favourite: the tuna and salmon bowl. I obviously had to order the ramen, with chicken I believe (this visit was over 2 months ago...). Our dishes started with a soup and a potato salad.

Soup Potato Salad
Soup and potato salad.

Elle's (I'll start using her blog name!) tuna and salmon bowl was piled high with crispy noodles. At the base was sushi rice, topped with fish and a generous amount of vegetables. Elle really likes the dressing and she mixed everything together.

Tuna salad IMG_2004
Tuna and salmon bowl.

I was quite excited to receive my ramen bowl. It seemed to have a lot going on: ground pork, seaweed, an egg, snow beans and greens. One of my favourite components tasted like pickled daikon. The noodles (that Elle thought were made on the spot) had a great texture. The broth was quite flavourful. Just as I imagined and more!

Bowl of ramen noodles.

Elle and I decide to splurge a bit and shared a green tea ice cream. We were surprised to see that the green tea flavouring came in powder form. Still, it was quite enjoyable.


Kazu was quite delicious. I really want to come back and try the shrimp burger!! I will definitely have to re-visit!

Kazu on Urbanspoon