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Au Tau porridge - Ha Giang's Deadly Speciality

A special porridge of the H'mong ethnic group in Ha Giang Province is made with the roots of the Aconitum fortunei Hemsl plant which are toxic without proper preparation.

The tuberous roots are collected in autumn before the plant flowers, and sun-dried. It is a useful herbal medicine and mostly used in treating rheumatism, paresis, arthralgia, luxation, sprains and contusions. However, it contains the alkaloid aconitine and is poisonous so it must not be taken by mouth.

Au Tau porridge - Ha Giang's Deadly Speciality
Photo by collect on the internet
The preparation is very time-consuming. The roots must be soaked in rice water overnight, boiled for five hours to detox the roots. After that, the roots can be turned into dough and cooked with meat and rice. After the porridge is done and poured into a bowl, the locals often add an egg, and season it with pepper, perilla and scallions.

However, people are advised to sip the porridge to test the toxic residue. If the tongue feels numb, it means the porridge is not safe enough. Different from other porridges, the Ha Giang speciality is known for its bitter taste at first spoon but can be sweet later on.

The locals in Ha Giang cooks the porridge daily and claimed it can help treat muscle and bone aches along with better sleep.

The roots must not be cooked in a pressure cooker. If someone is poisoned after eating the porridge, they should be massaged immediately.

Ha Giang is indeed a place with every suitable trait for an adventurous traveler and jungle lover. From its scenery to cuisine culture, everything is just so wild and free. Ha Giang Tours From Hanoi always brings interesting and impressive experiences in every journey. Add this place to your bucket list and you’ll never regret it!
Item Reviewed: Au Tau porridge - Ha Giang's Deadly Speciality Rating: 5 Reviewed By: Nga Do
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