I didn’t learn to cook in Vietnam because my mother had servants who did most of the cooking for us. My family and I came to Australia in 1979 as refugees when I was 22 years old and it was then that I learned to cook, and I did because I had to feed my family.
By
Thi Bich Van Hong

11 Jul 2012 - 3:51 PM  UPDATED 6 Sep 2013 - 9:31 AM

There is a big Vietnamese community in Australia and I learned to make goi by being exposed to the different ways it can be made and then creating my own version. I have changed the way I cook this dish over the years, but one thing that always stays the same is that it must have lots of colour. It’s also very important for the dressing to have a good balance of sweet and sour flavours.

I love goi because it’s tasty, fresh and healthy. It can be simple or fancy, depending on the ingredients used. I like cooking it on special occasions, such as birthdays and death anniversaries, because it is a very traditional dish. My children [Yen, 34, Thomas, 31, and Julie, 28] love goi. I haven’t taught them how to cook it because it entices them home for a family meal when I make it for them.

Recipe
Goi salad

 

As seen in Feast magazine, Issue 6, pg162.

Interview by Carla Grossetti. Photography by Katie Kaars.