Recipe: Vietnamese Fried Rice (Cơm Chiên)

I have always loved Vietnamese or Thai fried rice, I find them to be so flavorful and always wondered how they make it. I don’t use MSG in foods (well not straight up MSG anyway) so when I found this recipe and saw how easy it was…I had to make it! How was it? BIG SUCCESS. I already want to make more to eat more but while I am Chinese, I think there should be a limitation on how much Chinese sausage I consume in a single month.

Jasmine rice ready to cook with soy sauce and chicken bouillon

I only have bouillon cubes and didn’t break them up good enough. It’s okay, it makes the rice look cool.

Here’s an interesting step. 6 egg yolks, oyster sauce, green onions and cooked chinese sausage (forgot to add it in the beginning) in a bowl…waiting for the rice…

LOL here is the Chinese sausage that I boiled and chopped

Here it is! All mixed in together in the bowl…this is precooked! See the first picture if you want to see it in wok action! Heat up some butter and garlic in your wok and then add this mixture in until the fried rice is nice and crispy. Add more oyster sauce as desired. Absolutely delicious. But I wonder if I find it so delectable because of the lup cheong (chinese sausage). Well the point is, it is good.

Vietnamese Fried Rice (Cơm Chiên)

3 C Jasmine Rice
3 T Soy Sauce
3 t Chicken Bouillon (I used 3 small cubes)
1/2 package lup cheong (Chinese sausage) – about 3-4 sausages
6 egg yolks
6 garlic cloves, minced
3 T Oyster Sauce
2 T Butter
1/2 C Green onion, chopped

Wash jasmine rice and place in rice cooker with appropriate water (fill to the 3 line), add soy sauce and chicken bouillon. Cook the rice.

Boil or steam lup cheong for about 2-3 minutes, remove from heat and chop up, set aside.

Mix egg yolks, green onions, 2 T oyster sauce and lup cheong together in a big bowl. Add cooked rice to mixture and fold in. The rice can be made ahead and cold for this step!

In a wok, heat up butter and garlic over medium high heat. Add the rice mixture in and cook until browned and nice and crispy! Add 1 T of oyster sauce (more if you want) and top with more green onions (if you want), mix and enjoy!

Recipe from: foodwithsoy

Recipe: Nui Xào Bò (Vietnamese Macaroni)

Yes, another TikTok recipe but from a legit Vietnamese family so let’s not make fun. This was incredibly easy to make and SO good. The sauce is so nice and savory and OMG, did you know this trick? I’ve been cooking my pasta all wrong all my life. This recipe told me to boil up the water, add the pasta in and boil it on high for about 2 minutes and then shut off the heat and let the macaroni sit in the pot for about 12 minutes and it will cook perfectly. I placed the lid back onto the pot slightly ajar. Am I the only one who has “cooked” the pasta…like stand there and keep stirring and keep trying to make sure the water doesn’t boil over? Ridic! Anyway, I’m using this trick for all pasta now. I think spaghetti noodles can do with maybe 10-11 minutes of sitting. Ugh, so much easier.

Nui Xào Bò (Vietnamese Macaroni)

1 lb of Macaroni (16 oz – 1 box)
2 T Oil
2 T butter (separated into 1 T pats)
1 T chicken bouillon (3 small cubes for me)
1 lb of meat, sliced thin (shabu shabu type) or ground beef
1 C green onions (cut into 2 inch strips)

⅓ C Sugar
¼ C Oyster Sauce
¼ C Soy Sauce
½ C Dark Soy Sauce
Stir sauce ingredients and microwave in a microwave safe dish for one minute. Set aside.

Mix chicken bouillon with meat and set aside. 

Cook macaroni according to package instructions. I boiled my macaroni for 2 minutes on high heat, shut off the heat, placed the lid (slightly ajar) on the pot and let the macaroni continue to cook in the residual heat for 12 minutes. Drain, set aside.

Heat a pan with 2 T of oil. Add cooked macaroni, 7 T of the sauce and 1 T of butter, mix. Remove from the pan and set aside.

Heat pan with remaining 1 T butter, add meat and 1 C of green onions and cook for 2 minutes (or until meat is cooked through). Add macaroni and mix well, add more sauce if desired.

The sauce ingredients make a LOT. I think it could be enough for 3 recipes

Recipe: Thai Waterfall Beef Salad

You ever go to a Vietnamese restaurant and try their lemon beef salad? I’ve found they all make it just a bit different from one another (which is frustrating!) but I like it when they serve it with the thin slices of raw beef. It’s always a guess how the restaurant will prepare it and it gets me majorly sad when the salad arrives with beef that is completely cooked. Ugh. I like this salad because it’s very fresh and refreshing and the acidity in the dressing helps to “cook” the raw beef a bit, almost like a ceviche. So far, the best lemon beef salad I have tried is from Pho 777. It is killer, highly recommended.

Anyhoo, I had the inspiration to make it myself at home. I know the recipe title is Thai Waterfall Beef Salad, but it’s very similar to the lemon beef salad. I actually made this recipe twice and prefer using lemon juice over lime juice and I omit the raw bean sprouts because I personally dislike the taste of raw bean sprouts. Check it out!

The mix of greens in this salad guarantee choke flavor. Here’s what I have in this, romaine lettuce, fresh thai basil, cilantro and sautéed shallots (it can be raw but I decided to cook it up in the steak grease because hello, yum)

The best part about making this salad at home? NO BEEF LIMIT. Go hog wild because you’re paying for it anyway. I seared the beef I had and kept it more raw on the inside. Was so good you guys.

Okay doesn’t look too impressed after it’s mixed up but you gotta believe me, it’s so good. Give it a try! If too lazy to cook, try it from a restaurant!

Thai Waterfall Beef Salad

Recipe: the spruce eats


  • 1 to 2 sirloin steaks (depending on the amount of meat you prefer)
  • Marinade:
  • 2 tbsp. oyster sauce
  • 2 tbsp. soy sauce
  • 1 tbsp. lemon juice
  • 2 tbsp. brown sugar
  • For Salad:
  • 6 cups salad greens
  • 1 cup bean sprouts
  • 1 handful mint (or basil, fresh, lightly chopped or torn)
  • 1 cup coriander (fresh)
  • 1 cup papaya (fresh, cubed or cut into spears)
  • 1 cup tomatoes (cherry, left whole or sliced in half)
  • Dressing:
  • 1 to 2 tbsp. fish sauce (available at Asian food stores)
  • 3 tbsp. lemon juice
  • 1 1/2 tbsp. soy sauce
  • 1/2 tsp. cayenne pepper
  • 1 tsp. brown sugar
  • 2 tbsp. rice (sticky variety, toasted and ground, OR 2 tbsp. ground peanuts)

Steps to Make It

  1. Mix marinade ingredients together in a cup or bowl, stirring to dissolve the sugar. Pour over the steak(s), turning meat to coat. Set in the refrigerator to marinate.
  2. For the ground sticky rice (instead of peanuts): Place 2 tbsp. uncooked sticky rice in a dry frying pan over medium-high heat. Stirring continuously, dry-fry the rice until it starts to pop and is lightly toasted. Remove rice from the pan and allow to cool slightly before grinding it up with a coffee grinder, or pounding into a powder with pestle & mortar.
  3. Combine all dressing ingredients together in a cup or mixing bowl, stirring until sugar dissolves (adjust fish sauce according to your desired level of saltiness). Then prepare your bowl of greens and other salad ingredients.
  4. Grill the steak over a hot grill, turning only once or twice to retain the juices (meat should still be pink in the center).
  5. If oven-broiling the steak: Set oven to broil setting. Place steak on a broiling pan OR on a foil or parchment paper-lined baking sheet. Place in oven on the second-to-highest rung. Broil 5 to 7 minutes per side, or until steak is well done on the outside but still pink on the inside.
  6. While steak is cooking, toss the salad with the dressing. Taste-test for salt, adding more fish sauce if not salty enough, or more lime juice if too salty for your taste.
  7. When ready to serve, portion out salad onto serving plates or bowls. Slice the steak as thinly as you can and top each portion with a generous amount of sliced sirloin. Enjoy!

Jenny Notes:

  • Didn’t know where to find roasted rice powder so I made my own. I bought jasmine rice and slowly toasted it over medium heat until it was golden brown. After it cooled down, I ground them to a powder in a coffee grinder.
  • Play around with the salad ingredients, I didn’t put like half the ingredients she does. In fact, I named exactly what I put in the salad above. The second time I made this, I added mint and thai basil and it was delicious.

Fort Street Café – Honolulu, HI

When I used to work in downtown, I would always walk down Fort Street Mall for goodies. I remember Aloha Sushi used to be in the high rise where you would get your passport (both are gone I think). I’d grab a piroscki from Rada’s Piroscki from their original location, mind you. I’m sad to say that on my rare visit back to downtown, it was just not the same…and it tasted like they used the same oil from where I ate a decade ago lol.

Ah sorry for the tangent, I don’t quite recall if Fort Street Café was around when I worked downtown. But boy am I glad I found them since. We’ve had a few lunch orders here. I recommend the garlic chicken with pad thai and panang curry! Delicious. We used them to cater an office gathering earlier this year, I wish I took better notes on what sized pans we ordered. I will say we either got the Medium or Large. Here’s a link to their catering menu, it’s from 2019 but the prices were still the same for me this year.

Spring Rolls (Chicken)

I have never ordered spring rolls for catering before but can I say that I was pleasantly surprised? I’m pretty sure we got the medium order and look at this presentation! It was delicious too. I would say it was worth it!

Garlic Chicken

You can’t go wrong with garlic so this dish can’t lose! (It didn’t).

Pad Thai Noodles (Shrimp)

Fancy fancy with shrimp but we were ordering garlic chicken on its own so we went for the shrimp. Delicious.

Mix Vegetable (Tofu)

It’s vegetables. Enuff said.

Red Panang Curry (Seafood)

Mmmm panang curry. I love the peanut-y base curry. I could just eat copious amounts of rice with this curry. Like I don’t even need the innards, just the sauce and rice.

So yes, it was a great choice for catering. One thing to consider, how to pick food up. It definitely was a two person operation, one driver who pulls over illegally (somewhere, anywhere close by!). I was the runner and ran into the restaurant to make payment and they had it all ready to go. I had to make several trips back and forth…and fort street mall isn’t the cleanest or safest…haha. It’s okay, worked out okay and we got the food!

Pho King – Wahiawa, HI

I had to do it. I had to go to the restaurant called Pho King. Yes, I am childish. Do you know why I am being immature? Say the restaurant name outloud fast kine and you will understand. I am sure they totally know what they did in naming this restaurant and fully embrace it.

All jokes aside, I actually wanted to try this restaurant because people rave about their food! They are closed on Saturdays which is a boo from me, that’s one of the only days I can make it out there! Well, I took a weekday off for vacation and made the trek out there. Small hole in the wall shop, how was it?

Nice assortment of greens for our pho! Yum! They give a lot of lemon, lol.

Pretty generous with the rare beef! This is the serving of beef you get when you order the pho with just meatballs and rare beef. Nice!

Beef and Meatball Pho | $12.95

Delicious! Great broth with depth in flavor. Looks at all those onions and green onions, can’t go wrong there. Each bowl was licked clean.

Oxtail Pho | $17.50
contains peanuts and carrots

This is my pho! Yes! Oxtail pho! I enjoyed it. Well, not sure what I was expected. Honestly, if you’re expecting it to taste like the oxtail soup you get from Asahi Grill, you will be disappointed. I actually found that the broth and oxtail was much milder in seasoning. I don’t mind that because I love using their hot sauces. They were pretty generous with the cuts of meat, I would definitely order this again!

Lemongrass Chicken Sandwich | $8.75
served on french bread and contains mayonnaise, cucumber, chinese parsley, pickled daikon and carrots

I had to try their banh mi since I don’t know when I would be out here again! I ate this sandwich way later in the day and it held up okay. The bread was a bit chewy but I knew that going in. My biggest complaint was the veggies. Do you see how big the carrots and daikon are? My god, it was like eating my sandwich with carrot sticks inside. They were not seasoned enough or preserved enough, they need to slice their carrots and daikon thinner! The chicken was marinated perfect and tasted great.

Pho My Vi – Kaneohe, HI

I don’t get to visit Windward too often but when I do, I do enjoy trying the different eateries out there! I tried Pho My Vi for the first time the other week and really enjoyed it! The service was good (well it was a young man and he definitely did not want to be at work but he was still a good server), I enjoyed the food! Prices for the appetizers were a bit higher but I think the pho was an incredible value. The medium size was huge!

Spring Rolls (2pcs) | $7.95

Spring rolls tasted good, do I think two spring rolls for $8.00 is a good deal? No.

Beef Salad | $15.95
Citrus infused sliced rib eye served with romaine lettuce, onions, cucumbers, tomatoes, onion flakes, 
crushed peanuts, chinese parsley, tossed in Chef’s lime and pineapple specialty dressing.

Anytime I see beef salad on the menu, I just gotta try it! Pho 777 still has the best on the island, hands down. I don’t love visiting Pho 777 because it’s a bit run down and I question the cleanliness but you can’t beat their beef salad. The beef salad here was good, not great.

Combination Pho (Medium) | $12.75

I enjoyed my bowl of pho! I think they are generous with the meats and noodles, I felt quite satisfied after dining here! They have the hot chili sauce I like too (the one with the chili oil). Give them a try if you are feeling like pho and in Kaneohe!

Piggy Smalls – Honolulu, HI

I don’t think I need to tell you about The Pig and the Lady nor do I need to share about Piggy Smalls? Right? Well, I honestly haven’t been to The Pig and the Lady just yet but absolutely have been to Piggy Smalls a few times and loved it for both lunch and dinner. My previous post was dinner, this post will focus on lunch. Both meal times have their perks but I think I might favor lunch a bit more…let me share why…

Seasonal Slushy (Strawberry!) | $4.50

Finally! A seasonal flavor I can get behind! Strawberry! Nice refreshing drink, perfect for a hot day.

LFCauliflower | $12.00
money sauce, kaffir lime, peanuts, fried shallots, slaw

They are known for their LF Chicken Wings, and yes, many tables were ordering them! But somehow, I felt more veggie that day (word?). Well, I had no regrets getting the cauliflower, absolutely none. And honestly, you only get like 4 chicken wings. Look at this platter of cauliflower goodness. I am salivating just looking at it, and it was lightly breaded and deep fried so the cauliflower totally soaked up the money sauce. I could eat this as an entree with rice, well almost…but not when the next dish exists…

Pho-strami Banh Mi | $16.00 +$4 add noodles
all day smoked beef brisket, pickled mustard seeds, sriracha-lime onions, awesome sauce, on la tour baguette with a side of our signature pho broth & farm salad

I was being pretty good during this meal. I actually shared this entree, could I finish it in one sitting? Probably not, but I sure as heck could hoard the other half of the sandwich for a really luscious snack later. This beef brisket is fatty/juicy and tender…I mean…this is my perfect sandwich. The baguette is a little hard (that’s what she said) but you gotta have the crusty french bread right? And the bowl of pho noodles on the side? THERE IS NO WRONG WITH THIS DISH. I wish this sandwich was available during dinner, nope…it’s only during lunch. Anyone want to take me out to lunch?

Vietnamese Food – Los Angeles, CA

One of my favorite cuisines is Vietnamese Food. If I am ever feeling under the weather, Pho is the dish I crave most. Color me surprised that we only tried two Vietnamese Restaurants during this trip, although the trip wasn’t all that long. I’ll cover both restaurants in this post.

House Special | $13.49
Pho Kobe Style Beef – Thin Sliced Wagyu Steak Fillet Beef
Com Cha Suon Nuong | $9.49
Grilled Pork Chop and Pork Egg-Custard with Broken Rice

I can’t comment too much on the pho, I got the grilled pork chop dish. It was delicious!

Final meal in California at Pho Hue Oi
Mango Tango | $3.95
black tea with mango, passion fruit coconut jelly
Garlic Noodles with Grilled Jumbo Shrimp | $15.00

Okay, I just realized that I went to two Vietnamese restaurants and didn’t eat pho in either one. What was I thinking? Well if you think I have any regrets, I have none. These garlic noodles with shrimp were so delicious. Mmm…what a send-off of a meal. The drink? Perfect! I really wish I had found this restaurant earlier in the trip because I am sure we would have given it a second visit.

Broken Rice – Honolulu, HI

Broken Rice is a fairly new Vietnamese restaurant in Kaimuki. I’ve read some good reviews for this restaurant and was excited to try it! At first I thought we had to make reservations because I expected it to be busy. Honestly, we got there on a Saturday at about 6pm and it was fairly empty. Luckily, they got a few more diners as we were finishing up, whew.

Spring Rolls | $9.00

shrimp, pork, carrots, mushroom, long rice, onions.

Typical spring rolls you find at every Vietnamese restaurant, nothing special but it is delicious!

Crab Fried Rice | $18.00

king crab, pork sausage, egg and green onion

Hmm, starting to realize this is the second fried rice post this week. Haha, but I promise these restaurant visits were spread apart a few weeks. It was good! $18 good? Well not really now that I’ve had the Chengdu Style Fried Rice.

Shaking Beef | $19.00

cubed rib-eye steak, garlic, soy sauce, with house slaw.
Beef Rib Pho | $18.00

beef brisket and beef rib, flat rice noodle.

Okay, I can only comment on the Beef Rib Pho because this was my dish. One caveat, I was sick when I ate here so my taste buds were a bit compromised. I think I would have really enjoyed this pho had I not been sick. They give you two big chunks of beef ribs so it was nice and beefy…a bit too rich and fatty for my tastes since I wasn’t feeling great. You can see the oily soup so that’s my only complaint – if it was a less fatty, this would be fabulous!

Piggy Smalls – Honolulu, HI

Piggy Smalls is the sister restaurant of The Pig and the Lady. They are located in Ward Center, I don’t have much of a summary to give here, let’s get to the pictures and full review!

Snap Pea Limeade | $5.00

I love when restaurants offer great non-alcoholic drinks. I enjoy alcoholic drinks from time to time but generally don’t handle it as well as others. This was a really light and refreshing drink and not too sweet. I enjoyed it!

Breads and Spreads $10.00 (for all)
Smoky Miso Eggplant | Tahini, Yuzu
Truffle Shuffle | Porcini, Black Truffle Sofrito
Roasted Beets | Sour cream, Horseradish

Oh. My. God. Drool…this dish was AMAZING. I enjoyed all three dips immensely. The eggplant dip was great, you could taste the miso, the yuzu and the amazing smokiness. There was a sweetness to this dip and you can’t even tell that this is eggplant!

The roasted beets were great too, I love the taste of fresh beets and the horseradish notes came through but not so strong that my sinuses got cleared, lol.

The favorite of course was the TRUFFLE SHUFFLE. I’m a fool for truffle so this dip was heavenly. The porcini bits mixed with black truffle? If I could have licked the serving dish clean, I would have. I actually I would have but didn’t think of it at the restaurant. Definitely recommend this dish, but if I were to return, I would probably just get the truffle shuffle dip because I loved it so much.

Crispy Pork Belly | $23.00
pickled raisin & caper sauce, creamy grains, citrus braised celery, young herbs

I believe I had this dish during a previous visit months ago but it was somewhat of a different preparation. First, I’m excited to know that even though they make changes to their menu from time to time, they kept this dish on. Perfectly cooked pork belly with a perfect ring of crisp skin. Mmm…so good. The raisin and caper sauce on top complemented it nicely! The grains and herbs were just okay in my opinion.

Crunchy, Sour, Salty, Sweet | $13.00
Add Chopped Steak | $9.00
various raw vegetables, pickled raisins, ricotta salata, green olive & medjool date vinaigrette
Chopped Steak

Here is a instance of where we saw this salad from our neighboring diners and got hooked in by how pretty it looked. They both gave their thumbs up to it so we ordered it…and hefted it up with some chopped steak.

Okay first of all, this salad is chock full of vegetables (well, duh). But…it was full of a variety of radishes and while I enjoy radishes, this was just far too much. There were barely any leafy greens/young herbs so I felt like I just kept chewing on radish after radish after radish after radish, you get the idea. My suggestion would be to add some sliced fresh beets, more greens and some fresh goat cheese…the salad would be far more balanced and more yum!

The chopped steak, I didn’t expect this, was DELICIOUS. I think the waiter said the steak is marinated in some kind of balsamic sauce…I feel like I tasted a type of Worcestershire sauce. Doesn’t matter, the steak was cooked perfectly and was super tender. The savory taste of the steak was great, $9 for this as a side to the salad was a deal. Should ask if they could sell me the steak for $9…lol

Frozen S’mores | $9.00
chocolate sorbet, house made graham crackers, bruleed marshmallow fluff
Jelly Donut Softserve | $8.00
powdered sugar donut custard topped with our seasonal homemade jam (lemon cranberry)

I can only comment on this Jelly Donut Softserve because this was my dessert. Get ready because I was not happy but it was not entirely their fault. I guess I got too excited and didn’t really read this title or description but I expected a jelly donut with the lemon cranberry flavor of the month as the jelly.

Oh boy, I did not expect it to be a donut softserve with the lemon cranberry sauce on top. One thing I didn’t know also is that they add sprinkles. I hate sprinkles. I know, I know. What kind of monster hates sprinkles? Well, that’s me. Never been into it and correct me if I’m wrong, aren’t they not supposed to be chalky? These sprinkles were SO chalky, I couldn’t enjoy it. So it was hard to enjoy this dessert when I had in mind a donut coming my way (my fault) and then getting this. I’m not a huge fan of vanilla type softserve (which I couple this one into) so I gotta give a thumbs down. But…there is a lemon cake on their menu that I do want to try next time so there is always hope!