Marrickville is a paradise for foodies, especially those like me whose tastes have a distinctly Oriental tendency. Street windows tell tantalising tales of crisp roast ducks and sticky, glossy char sui pork, and reveal diners bending over steaming bowls of fragrant, healing phở.
At lunchtime, locals patiently queue around street corners for some of the city’s best bánh mì. And then there are European institutions, narrow delicatessens crammed full of everything salted and smoked, pickled and preserved.
Here, I have brought together the finest local ingredients to create an ode to Marrickville’s food style: the ‘Urbánh mi’.
• ½ Chinese crispy roast duck
• 4 white baguette-style bread rolls
• 4 tbsp duck liver pâté
• 4 tbsp best quality, thick mayonnaise (European style)
• 2 Lebanese cucumbers, cut into quarters lengthwise, seeds removed
• 4 spring onions, green part only
• A bunch of fresh coriander
• 1 long red chilli, thinly sliced
• 2 carrots, julienned
• 1 cup warm water
• 2 tbsp rice vinegar
• 2 tbsp sugar
• 1 tbsp salt
• Juice of 1 lime
• Light soy sauce
• Sesame oil
1. Mix the sugar, salt and water until the sugar is dissolved, then add the rice vinegar.
2. Place the carrots in a deep bowl or jar and pour the pickling mixture (see above) over them.
3. Allow to steep for at least an hour at room temperature.
4. Cut open your bread rolls lengthways,
5. Spread a tablespoon of pâté on the top of each roll and a tablespoon of mayonnaise over the bottom.
6. Remove bones from the duck pieces and distribute the meat and skin evenly between the rolls.
7. Squeeze the excess pickling juice from the carrots and lay some onto each roll.
8. Add to rolls a couple of lengths of cucumber, a spring onion, and some sprigs of coriander (no need to pick or chop the leaves), then scatter over the chilli.
9. Squeeze over the lime and add a drizzle of soy sauce and sesame oil.
10. Serve immediately, accompanied by serviettes.
Recipe by Olivia Mackay, www.scoffandquaff.wordpress.com