Luke Nguyen revisits his beloved Vietnam to delve deeper into the culinary legacy left by the French
The French colonisation of Vietnam, which lasted for nearly one hundred years, had a profound influence on Vietnamese lifestyle, architecture and cuisine.
Against a backdrop of grand colonial hotels, Luke talks to chefs, bakers, farmers and family members to explore the impact the French had on what the Vietnamese eat and cook today. More than 100 recipes showcase the fusion of French and Vietnamese ingredients and techniques, interwoven with the heart-warming and personal stories Luke uncovers on his journey.
Luke Nguyen is a renowned Vietnamese Australian chef, best known for his television series Luke Nguyen's Vietnam, which this book ties into, and more recently his new series Luke Nguyen's Greater Mekong.
Born in a Thai refugee camp after his parents escaped their homeland in Vietnam, Luke's family eventually made their way to Australia where Luke was raised in Sydney's vibrant and storied Vietnamese quarter. His parents opened and ran a local Vietnamese restaurant called Pho Cay Du and it was this familial passion for food that first ignited Luke's interest in Vietnamese cooking. After learning the basics from his parents, Luke trained with a number of respected Sydney chefs before opening The Red Lantern restaurant with his sister, Pauline. Since then, The Red Lantern has become one of Sydney's most acclaimed restaurants, winning Best Vietnamese Restaurant in 2009.
Luke has written four previous cookbooks: Secrets of the Red Lantern, Songs of Sapa, Indochine and Greater Mekong. Luke currently divides his time between his home in Sydney and Vietnam, where he is the host of Masterchef Vietnam.