My Vietnamese Kitchen is a collection of recipes passed down through Uyen Luu's family. Uyen was born in Saigon and spent her childhood there before leaving Vietnam in the aftermath of the war. She regularly travels back there to visit family and pick up more classic and modern recipes for dishes found in the homes and on the streets of Vietnam. The recipes in the book tell a story - about Uyen's family, about the culture of her heritage, about the rising popularity of this cuisine around the world. In essence, the food of her country aims to strike the perfect balance between sweet, sour, salty, bitter, hot and umami, and to cater for any occasion and time of day, every mood and ailment. Uyen describes some of the most commonly used produce and offers easy-to-find alternatives so that every recipe is accessible. She guides you through chapters such as Soups, Snacking, Noodles, Dinner and Desserts, weaving in tales of etiquette, personal history and tradition and providing evocative photos of her travels throughout. Popular recipes include pho soup, banh mi baguettes and summer rolls.
Uyen Luu is a writer, cook, photographer, and food and prop stylist. She trained in fine art film and video at Central St Martins. She runs supperclubs and Vietnamese cooking classes in her Hackney home, and writes and blogs about food, recipes and travel. She writes for Time Out and her recipes have appeared in the Evening Standard.