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Bun Cha

This fresh and zingy noodle dish is inspired by the Vietnamese classic, bun cha and features layers of spice, acidity, fragrance and a touch of sweetness.

From the book

Chris Baber


This Vietnamese-inspired noodle recipe is super fresh with a kick of chilli. You can remove the seeds from the chilli for a less intense heat. Those little pork patties pack some serious flavour. You can cook this straight away or prep the pork in advance and let it marinate for a couple of hours in the fridge. Either way, it’s delicious.

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500g pork mince
1 small iceberg lettuce, shredded
4 carrots, grated
4 spring onions, chopped
2 red chillies, sliced
1 small bunch of Thai or regular basil or mint, leaves picked
300g vermicelli rice noodles
1 tbsp toasted sesame oil
1 tbsp vegetable oil
For the marinade:
4 garlic cloves, chopped
1 tbsp dark soy sauce
2 tsp caster sugar
1 tbsp fish sauce
1 tsp ground black pepper
1 small red onion, finely chopped
For the dressing:
350ml water
75g caster sugar
100ml fish sauce
juice of 2 limes


Put the pork mince into a bowl with all the marinade ingredients. Mix together using your hands until well combined. Roll into 12 even-sized balls. Set aside to marinate while you prep the other ingredients.

Put the lettuce, carrots, spring onions, chillies and basil into a bowl and toss together. Set aside.

Put the rice noodles into a bowl. Cover with boiling water and leave to soak for 5 minutes. Drain off the water, then add the sesame oil. Toss to stop them sticking together.

When the noodles are soaking, add the dressing ingredients to a small saucepan over a medium heat. Stir until the sugar has dissolved. Turn off the heat.

Heat the vegetable oil in a large non-stick frying pan over a medium heat.

Add the marinated pork balls to the pan. Use the back of a spoon to flatten them down slightly to form small patties. Fry for about 3 minutes on each side until cooked all the way though with no pink remaining. When cooked, spoon 1 tsp of dressing over each patty.

Divide the noodles into serving bowls, then pour over some dressing. Top with the salad and patties. Drizzle with more dressing and serve.

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From the book: Easy: Simply delicious home cooking

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