How We Use Shrimp in Vietnamese Cooking and the Importance of the Sea in Cuisine

A lot of Vietnamese cooking, as any chef will find, takes from the sea. In our ethnic cuisine, we have fish sauce and other Vietnamese-specific ingredients that pull from what’s given to the people by the ocean at their doorstep. On top of that, a lot of dishes require a protein source of some kind. For a long time, families and street vendors could only use the protein available to them. For some, all they have is what’s caught in the sea and thus, shrimp’s a go-to eat.

The philosophy behind making so much of Vietnamese food is to achieve balance. When you add something spicy, you add something else to balance it out. When you have something salty and wet, you put in something sugary and dry or something else to achieve balance. A method of preparation like this is conducive to the inclusion of protein sources like shrimp which are high in nutrition and which can also provide meats for dishes that may not otherwise have them.

Unlike other foreign protein sources in Canada, shrimp is one that’s regularly consumed by the population. For this reason perhaps, a lot of patrons feel comfortable ordering dishes containing shrimp because they know what to expect. This isn’t as surprising to the taste buds as other proteins. In Toronto Vietnamese cuisine, we hope to continue using shrimp and other authentic Vietnamese recipes to provide our customers the highest quality tastes of Vietnam in the city.

Are you looking for an amazing 5-star Vietnamese restaurant in Toronto? Drop by TorontoPHO. If there ever was a place every Torontonian has to try, we’d argue it’s this. Enjoy real, healthy, decades-old Vietnamese recipes prepared just like our parents and grandparents did before us. Browse a menu of vegetarian options, healthy meats, bowls of pho, and so much more. TorontoPHO awaits!