John Thottungal

The Vietnamese students association organised a culinary night to teach students how to make popular dishes as a part of the Viet Week activities.

The dishes featured included the spring rolls, vermicelli noodle bowl and Che, a traditional dessert drink.

At the workshop, students learned how to make these dishes from the beginning. The spring rolls made of rice paper took a little more skill than the vermicelli bowl. Volunteers showed students how to dip the piece of rice paper in water and then add the ingredients after which it was folded.

“The folding is the slightly intricate, but easily learnable,” Cindy Dam, the event coordinator, said.

The fully rolled spring roll has piece of meat usually pork or seafood, vegetables and tofu in it and is larger than an average Chinese spring roll. The spring roll is not fried which also adds to its flavor as the rice paper provides a unique starchy texture.

This was served with peanut sauce as a side, which adds a little zing to the spring roll.

Students learned how to customize their own vermicelli bowls at the next station with choices of seafood, sautéed beef slices, sliced vegetables atop a helping of vermicelli a thin flavorful rice noodle. A serving of the traditional dessert Che, which had pieces of jackfruit, lychee and coconut water served in cups rounded out the culinary night.

Viet Week was organized on a larger scale this year, with a flash mob dance, a cultural workshop, dragon dance, movie night and a fashion show at The Plinth. The week coincided with the Mid-Autumn festival, which was on Oct. 3 this year.