Sunday, July 14, 2013

Food of Vietnam 3: Street Food

Not many people are brave enough to eat the street food when they are traveling but my friends and I are always keen on eating what the locals eat so we just go to the busiest stalls and join in, so far this method has worked well.

One of our favorite things was this noodle dish called Cao Lau, prepared by a husband and wife team in a tiny cubicle with 2 burners and a chest freezer, they feed about 20 or 30 people in a sitting and everything is perfect, we went there twice especially for the noodles in a meaty broth, topped with pork, lettuce and crispy fried wanton squares, I am going to try recreate this at home.

The husband suggested this whole baked fish topped with peanuts and chilli, perfectly cooked and balanced, we ended off with the best dessert of the trip, a banana and chunky coconut pancake, I loved the gooey texture with the huge chunks of fresh coconut.

This I drank or ate everywhere I could, it sounds a bit wierd being a bean drink, beans topped with sugar syrup, ice, coconut and some other varying ingredients like sago, sweet potato, jelly cubes and fruit. Very refreshing.

Their main starch is rice and they use rice and rice flour to create many different dumplings, desserts and textures, these taste a bit like rice pudding which has been baked, savoury and sweet.

Not really a street food as such but you will find their desserts are not very sweet, this above left is a moon cake, made of bean paste with an egg yolk in the centre has an addictive flavour and texture but this mango and sticky rice won my heart, so simple with a slightly salty flavour, sticky coconut rice along side sliced mango, topped with coconut milk and crispy rice found more in Thailand.

You will find the best crispy duck on the streets and I finally got to taste a real Bahn Mi sandwich which looks surprisingly plain but the spicy, crispness as with all the food I ate left me wanting more.

Article and Pictures Copyright by Tamsyn Wells

No comments: