At home vermicelli bowl with lemongrass chicken! Simple, flavorful, and colorful and easily adaptable!
One of my favorite things to order at a Vietnamese restaurant is a vermicelli bowl, a Bun Thit Nuong. For those who haven’t had it, Bun Thit Nuong is a rice noodle bowl with the sweet salty tender pork shoulder pieces, chewy vermicelli noodles, pickled vegetables, and all with salty spicy toppings you can put on top. Usually, it comes with a sweet fish sauce which I love. I usually also add a little bit (okay, a lot) of sriracha for the heat.
In this version, I used chicken instead because chicken is easier to find in my neck of the woods. I tried it with breast and thighs and found chicken thighs were better because it was so much juicier.
I think rice noodles aka vermicelli noodles, aka rice sticks, are pretty much everywhere nowadays. If you have access to an Asian market, I recommend getting fresh noodles in the refrigerated section. If not, your local grocery store likely has it in the international aisle. But seriously, the fresh noodles are so much better in terms of texture and taste.
The pickled vegetables here is KEY, in balancing out the rich flavorful chicken with that sweet, tangy crunch. I like to make it earlier so the veggies have time to soak.
Except for the rice noodles, the components for this vermicelli bowl can be made ahead! When you are ready to eat, reheat and boil the noodles according to directions.
I chopped my lemongrass very very finely. So the flavor would fully infuse. And I didn’t really want to bite into big pieces of lemongrass.