The characteristics of Vietnamese Cuisine - the flavors and textures - reveals many techniques and ingredients adopted from the Thai and the Chinese kitchen.
The one most characteristic element in virtually every Vietnamese dish is NuocMam. It is used as flavoring in cooking and takes the place of salt. NuocMam is to the Vietnamese what soy sauce is to the Chinese. Vietnamese dishes are generally light in nature using little fat, even in stir-fried foods. Vietnamese food, therefore, is well suited to today's health and diet-conscious diners.