Celebrated chef, Luke Nguyen, in the third installment of his popular series takes us on a culinary journey where he uncovers the unique flavors and people across of the Greater Mekong region of Southeast Asia.
Luke Nguyen, acclaimed owner and chef of the Sydney restaurant ‘The Red Lantern’, returns to the country of his heritage and prepares dishes in locations that represent the real Vietnam, in all its chaotic vibrancy. On our journey we meet many of Luke’s relatives, who share with him the secrets of Vietnamese cuisine, and help him discover the tiny cottage industries that have been creating vital ingredients for many centuries. With his expert culinary knowledge and simple cooking skills, Luke prepares recipes for the home cook and anyone who wants to try this magnificent cuisine in an easy to follow style that he displays with confidence and passion.
Nguyên Lê is a maverick, a hyper-fluent guitarist with a penchant for mixing up genres. Born in Paris of Vietnamese descent, he’s regarded as a jazz musician, though his most celebrated albums pay tribute to 60s rock gods like Hendrix and Floyd. Here he teams up with a young traditionalist, Ngô Hong Quang, on fiddle and lute to portray “the soul of Vietnam” and its quickening evolution. There are jaunty folkish tunes, temple bells and ethereal melodies with titles like Heaven’s Ground, but nothing arrives without surprises. One moment you are among mountain clouds, then Lê unleashes a storm of widdly-diddly electric axe. Italian trumpeter Paolo Fresu adds elegant Milesesque licks to a remarkable fusion of ancient and modern.