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"from hong's table to yours"


Goi Ngo Sen Muc (Squid Lotus Roots Salad)

serves 4



  • 2 jars of lotus rootlets(pickled sweet and sour)
  • 1 pickling cucumber(may substitute w/shredded cabbage, pickling or none)
  • 1 jumbo carrot for shredding
  • 1 red bell pepper sliced thin
  • 2 large lime
  • ½ c fish sauce
  • 1/2 cup of palm sugar or granulated(palm is not so sweet, use less if you use granulated)
  • 1/4 cup of rice vinegar(marukan brand)
  • sliced Thai chilies frozen or fresh 
  • Thai basil leaves, mint and cilantro
  • 1 large U5 squid, boiled, or shrimp and chicken are popular varieties (Note: Viet Huong carries all)

Carrot-Ginger Dressing:

§  1 12 oz. baby carrots pack

§  1 piece of .25 lb ginger peeled and cut into disks

§  1 shallot, minced, or ¼ cup minced onion

§  3 tablespoons unseasoned rice vinegar, rice vinegar has a sweeter and subtle flavor than regular vinegar

§  ¼ cup of 1 type of oil: canola, grapeseed, avocado, olive, flaxseed oil

§  1 tablespoon sesame oil

§  1 teaspoon granulated sugar or palm sugar

§  4 teaspoons miso paste(the original recipe says optional but the miso gives the dressing depth in flavor, saltiness and some added probiotic. This is a must have in my book, never optional.

§  1/4c teaspoons mirin

§  1 c filtered cold water

Making the Japanese Carrot-Ginger dressing: Add all of the liquids in the blender and prepare all vegetables ready for processing. Turn on the food processor with the liquids first then add a handful of vegetables at a time for easier pureeing. The food processor  will slow down as the dressing gets fuller and voluminous. This is the reason for the liquids first before vegetables. If you like the dressing thinner you can add another cup of water. The miso should still be enough.

Squid Lotus Roots Salad.jpg


  1. Rinse the lotus rootlets and shave thinly. Having said this, the rootlets are about the size of chopsticks. I use a toothpick with pointy ends and run the toothpick length wise to shred them. It tastes the same if they are even or uneven. You just want to at least make it into 3 pieces because the ideas is to make it the texture of long thin shredded coleslaw. I haven't used cucumber in this recipe but I know cabbage would work well. Crunchy texture is the goal in this recipe. Cucumber is crunchy raw so add last after the vinegar.
    2. Julienne the carrots and cut the red bell pepper into thin strips. Bell peppers are crunchy raw so add last with cucumber.
    3.Heat up 1/4 cup water with 2 tablets of palm sugar, mix until dissolved.

    4. Mix together all the liquid seasonings to make the dressing in a separate bowl. Mix well. (Fish sauce, sugar, rice vinegar, lime juice and chili's) 
    5. Combine lotus rootlets, carrots, cucumber, and bell pepper. The colors of the salad should pop with white, red, orange, and light green. Pour the dressing onto the salad and let marinade for 1 hour.
    6. Boil the squid in water. Add a little salt for taste. Cook the squid until the squid is opaque in color, firmer in texture. Squid, when over cooked, is chewy but under cooked will be still a little slimy, soft, and translucent. Once cooked, slice the squid into thin strips. Add to the salad with the dressing.

    7. After 1 hour, use your hands to mix together the dressing and vegetables so they are blended together and broken down softer. just for 40 seconds. Drain the dressing so you may stop the cooking acids .

    8. Clean and cut the mint, cilantro and thai basil. Remove the mint leaves and throw away the stems. Do the same with the Thai basil. Clean and cut 1/4th of the end of cilantro if they are long and use the leafy parts. Cut all the herbs up and garnish them on top of the salad.

Quick Notes: 

Mirin: A rice wine used in Japanese cooking, mirin is a bit like sake, but sweeter and with less alcohol. In fact, one kind—shin mirin—has only a trace amount of alcohol; so if you’re buying a fresh bottle for family cooking, that’s the one to choose. You can also leave it out completely, and no one will miss it. Asian (or dark or roasted) sesame oil is made from toasted sesame seeds and has a deep, nutty, very appealing flavor

Broken rice with Pork chops, pork loaf, pork skins (Com Tam bi cha, thit nuong)

may special.jpg


For one loaf, you'll need:

  • 1 lb ground pork
  • 1 bundle vermicelli noodles(80 grams), soaked
  • 1/3 cup dry shredded wood ear mushrooms soaked
  • 3 large eggs, 2 eggs in the meatloaf, and 1 for the top
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp fish sauce premium grade you can eat raw. (3 crab brand recommended)
  • 1 carrot, grated

Bi (Pork skin with shredded pork, roasted rice powder, and garlic powder)

  • Approximately 1 lb Cooked, shredded pork skin.
  • 1/2 lb. pork loin cooked then sliced and cut into long strips about 3 inches long.
  • 3 oz. bag of thinh/roasted rice powder
  • 2 oz. garlic powder
  • 1 ts salt

Grilled lemongrass pork

  • 1-2 lbs pork shoulder steaks or cutlets
  • 2 tbsp minced lemongrass (jar or stalks will do)
  • 1/8 C sugar (I prefer saltier meat so I add less sugar, 1 tsp)
  • 1 Tbsp fish sauce 3 crab)
  • 1/2 Tbsp ground black pepper
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 shallots, minced (red shallots)
  • 1 1/2 Tbsp sesame oil (kadoya brand)
  • 1 Tbsp Vietnamese caramel sauce or thick soy sauce, no substitutions
  • 1 tsp salt (depending on it you like it sweeter or saltier)

Nuoc Cham (dipping sauce)

  • 2 1/2 Tbsp sugar
  • 1 1/2 Tbsp hot water
  • 1/4 C fish sauce(3 crab brand or phu quoc brand)/
  • 1/4 cup fresh lime  juice, no substitute
  • 1 small clove garlic, minced
  • 1 red chilli, deseeded and minced
  • 1 shallot, peeled and minced


  1. Soak the vermicelli noodles and tree ear fungus in hot water for 15 minutes until softened.
  2. In a bowl, mix 1 lb ground pork, vermicelli noodles, tree ear fungus, 2 large eggs 1/2 tsp salt, and 1 tsp fish sauce. Mix thoroughly.
  3. Place pork mixture into baking pan or individual ramekins. Ramekins will portion for individual rather that a loaf that requires cutting into portions. Generously layer on the egg yolk mixture and steam for about 30 minutes. This will vary with your pan and thickness of the custurd. Check using sticking fork or toothpick.



  1. First thaw the pork skin in the fridge the day before you plan to make this. Submerge pork skin in slightly luke warm water with a pinch of salt. Do not use hot water as this may congeal the pork skin together. Let the skin rehydrate about 20-30 mins. Drain and allow to dry before mixing.
  2. Also day before, season the pork loin. A quick way is to boil it, but you can season it the day before and broil it day after. It will have better flavor.
  3. Mix the dry pork skin, pork, salt, and approximately 2-3 oz. of roasted rice powder and garlic thoroughly. Add more roasted rice powder or garlic to taste. Set aside in the fridge until ready. 



  1. Grill or broil the meat until done then slice into strips to your desired thickness
  1. Mix the sugar and hot water together so the sugar dissolves.Add the minced herbs garlic and chili. then add the fish sauce. Once all the 4 components of sweet, spicy, salty and savory are added, add the lime juice last. It should taste like a strong sauce of sweetness and saltiness. Heat is according to your heat tolerance, add more or less chili to adjust to desired heat level. The lime juice should brighten the mixture. Shredded carrots may be added to garnish the dipping sauce.
  2. When plating, serve with sliced cucumbers and tomatoes.
  3. Enjoy!