Cha Ca La Vong



Recipe courtesy of Chef Andrew Le of The Pig and The Lady.Photography by Travis Sasaki.
Course: Main Course
Author: Chef Andrew Le


  • Blender or Food Processor
  • Sauté Pan


Cha Ca La Vong

  • 1 Pack of Vermicelli Noodles
  • 8 Ten oz. Fresh Catfish Fillets (Skinned)

Herb Mix

  • 2 Cups of Dill (Cleaned and Picked)
  • 2 Cups of Mint (Cleaned and Picked)
  • 2 Cups of Shiso (Cleaned and Picked)
  • 2 Cups of Rau Ram (Cleaned and Picked)
  • 2 Cups of Onion Sprouts (Cleaned and Picked)

Fish Marinade

  • 100 Grams Shallot
  • 300 Grams Galangal (Peeled and Chopped)
  • 160 Grams Fresh Turmeric (Washed Well and Chopped)
  • 150 Grams Ginger (Peeled and Chopped)
  • 25 Grams Dried Turmeric
  • 10 Grams Black Peppercorns
  • 325 Grams Olive Oil
  • 900 Grams Plain Yogurt
  • 150 Grams Fish Sauce
  • 60 Grams Sugar

Mam Tom Sauce (Make 1-2 Days In Advance)

  • 225 Grams Pineapple
  • 32 Grams Garlic (Peeled and Chopped)
  • 125 Grams Ginger (Peeled and Chopped)
  • 98 Grams Mam Tom Bac (Fermented Shrimp Paste)
  • 280 Grams Sugar
  • 380 Grams Lime Juice
  • 215 Grams Fish Sauce
  • 1 Can of Coconut Water
  • 125 Grams of Chili Sambal Oelek

Finishing Toppings

  • 1 Cup Fried Shallots
  • 1 Cup Roasted Peanuts (Chopped)


Prepare Mam Tom Sauce (1-2 Days In Advance).

  • Blend pineapple, garlic, ginger, mam tom bac, sugar, lime juice, fish sauce, and coconut water till smooth.
  • Add the sambal and mix well.
  • Store in refrigerator.

Prepare Fish Marinade.

  • Blend everything together until smooth.

Marinate Fish.

  • Marinate fish at least 4 hours, overnight preferred.
  • Once marinated, take out and remove excess marinade.

Prepare Herb Mix.

  • Mix all together, reserve.

Prepare Fish.

  • Over medium heat, warm a sauté pan with enough grapeseed oil to cover the bottom.
  • Once oil is hot, carefully put in the fish and cook for 3-4 minutes on each side till golden brown.
  • Once browned, take out of pan and reserve.

Prepare Noodles

  • Cook noodles per instructions on package.
  • Drain, rinse, cool, and arrange the vermicelli noodles in a bowl.

Plate and Serve.

  • Place the cooked catfish on top of vermicelli noodles.
  • Sprinkle a spoonful each of fried shallots and roasted peanuts.
  • Spread a generous amount of the herb mix on top and serve with the mam tom sauce on the side.


*VERY IMPORTANT* to make this sauce 1-2 days in advance for the flavors to develop and funk of the fermented shrimp paste to mellow out.