Vietnamese coriander is one of those numerous herbs that give Vietnamese cuisine its unique touch. The herb is, though, also used outside of Vietnam. It appears in Malaysian recipes and is quite typical of the Singa¬porean cuisine.
A typical South Vietnamese noodle soup is based on broth (often from chicken, pork or fish, or a combination) with a variety of different ingredients, which usually include small meat pieces, boiled and raw vegetables, fish balls, young onion greens and fried garlic slices. The soup is served with a large amount of additional flavourings, which are left to the diner to finalize his soup: lime wedges, mustard paste, fish sauce, fresh red chilli slices and a host of herbs which are dipped into the soup using chopsticks and eaten together with a spoonful of soup.
Similarly, stir-fried meat and vegetables are never seen without generous amounts of chopped herbs, and the same holds for the tasty Vietnamese sandwiches, a colonial heritage. Since Vietnamese cooking is far less spicy than, for example, Thai cooking, the herbs are indispensable