Chef Charles Phan brings us the best of modern Vietnamese cuisine from his famed San Francisco restaurant in The Slanted Door.
This crunchy cabbage-based salad has been on our menu since our very first day, and we now serve it at our two Out the Door locations. The secret is to presalt the cabbage and shred the chicken meat by hand: this makes for a superior texture.
- Using a small handful of salt, rub the chicken all over to remove any loose skin and dirt, and rinse well. Bring a large pot of water to a boil over high heat. Add the chicken, ginger, and green onions and boil for 15 minutes. Turn the heat off, cover the pot, and let stand for another 15 minutes. Remove the chicken from the pot and let cool. Pull the chicken meat from the bones and shred with your hands— you should have about 2 cups. Use a knife to slice the skin into strips. Season with a dash of salt.
- Place the cabbage in a colander. Sprinkle with a small handful of salt and, using your hands, massage the salt into the cabbage. Let stand for a few minutes, then rinse the salt off with cold water and let the cabbage drain.
- To serve, toss the cabbage, rau ram, vermicelli, and flavored fish sauce together in a large bowl. Add the chicken and lightly toss. Season to taste with black pepper and garnish with the fried shallots and peanuts. Serve at once.
- In a small bowl, combine the fish sauce, sugar, vinegar, and water, and stir until the sugar is dissolved. Add the garlic and chile and stir until combined. Use immediately or refrigerate for up to 1 week.
Reprinted with permission from The Slanted Door, copyright (c) 2014 by Charles Plan. Published by Ten Speed Press, an imprint of Penguin Random House LLC.