Vietnamese street food in the eyes of foreigners

Nga Do
Vietnamese should be proud of their cuisine cultureThe bread with grilled meat ball street food in Nguyen Trai street, District 1, Ho Chi Minh city was selected as one of 12 world’s best street food by website of American Condé Nast Traveler magazine.

The following are 10 honored Vietnamese dishes

Bread with grilled meat balls

Besides, Vietnamese sandwich was also named in top most delicious street food in the world by American National Geographic magazine.

Khot cake

Khot cake entered list of top world’s best dishes at International Street Food Festival 2013 in Singapore.

Vietnamese pancake (banh xeo)

CNN selected Vietnamese pancake as one of 40 best Vietnamese dishes

Griller banana wrapped in sticky rice (Chuoi nep nuong)

This is one of most breathtaking dishes in the world in a competition at International Street Food Festival 2013 in Singapore.

Beef noodle soup

Neither lighting signboard nor luxury furniture, it is incredible flavour that makes Pho stall in Hang Trong street outstanding among the others.

Situated right at the beginning of Hang Trong street, the stall only opens from 5 pm to 8 pm and sell out quite quick. More than 20 plastic chairs, antiquated bowls, a big pot of soup broth on charcoal stove, a large basket of noodles. They are all what the stall has.
Most of patrons don’t ask or know the master’s name. They just call the stall “carrying pho stall”. The unique name is originated from eating style of customers. In spite of hot steaming pho, the customer can’t help carrying the bowl and enjoying the dish.

Beef noodle soup ranked 28th place out of 50 world’s best dishes by CNN in 2011
Not have many options such as beef, chicken or bordelaise sauce… “carrying” pho has only Hanoi style just like statement of Nguyen Tuan writer: a good noodle soup must be decorated with crispy brisket, rich plate, smooth noodle, a lot of split and diced green onion.

Eating here on weekend afternoon, you will easily see many people reward themselves two bowls of pho.

Square crunchy spring rolls

Situated in Dao Duy lemon tea street, “Square crunchy crab meat spring roll” restaurant is a familiar address to those who like a snack. Rush hour of restaurant is at noon. At that time, there is almost no space. Therefore, you should go early to find an empty table. The restaurant is even more crowded at weekend. Many people have to wait in line for their turn.

Square crunchy spring roll was selected to be one of most delicious Asian street food by CNN.

Exactly as its name, the spring rolls are not long and round like traditional style but square-shaped. The dish was said to be originated from Haiphong but it is now served in both Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh city.

Fried fish balls

La Vong fried fish balls is a must-try dish of foreign backpackers. It is the most popular name in every pocket guide book. The house still remains specific architecture of old quarter. No.14 Cha Ca street is the place keeping intact spirit of Hanoi fried fish ball over past century.

Earlier, the street was called Hang Son. Anyone good at Vietnamese history also knows that Hang Son street was occupied and then became unknown in French colonial period. The name Cha Ca (Fried Fish Ball) was derived from popularity of the dish. The restaurant opens from early morning to 12 pm and from late afternoon to midnight and crowded all the time.

The author Patricia Schultz listed La Vong fried fish ball into “1000 places to see before you die” book. MSNBC news agency ranked La Vong fried fish ball restaurant at 5th position out of 10 places you should know before you die.

Fried fish ball is not an expensive dish but very complicated. Four typical fish species for process are hemibragus, snake-head, huss, and sheat-fish. Many people think that semilabeo notabilis is also used to make fried fish ball but it is not. The fish is very small and rare. Hemibragus fish is the best but it is very expensive and rare. Thus, mainly ingredient is snake-head fish.

The best time to eat La Vong fried fish balls is on cold days. However, the restaurant is always crowded all the time regardless of season and weather.

Crispy fried spring roll

“Spice Garden” restaurant of Sofitel Legend Metropole Hotel in Hanoi is place serving Vietnamese distinctly dishes for international guests. Crispy fried fish ball is processed into various styles to satisfy the guests from different cultures in the world.

Ms. Thanh Binh, a chef of the restaurant said that the dish seemed to be simple because it was too familiar to Vietnamese dining but making a good spring roll was very complex. Entering top 10 best Vietnamese dishes, fried spring roll and noodle soup is considered as cuisine symbol of Vietnam.

The guests of “Spice Garden” restaurant come from different countries. Therefore, apart from traditional pork spring roll and crab spring roll, the restaurant also offers noble scallop, shrimp, fish and vegetarian spring rolls.

Crab rice vermicelli soup

Crab rice vermicelli soup is honorly named in the list of most tasty Asian dishes in 2012 by CNN

Grilled pork with vermicelli

Located at the beginning of Dong Xuan Market, “Lady Nga’s bun cha” stall is crowded with patrons all the time. This is one of few grilled pork on bamboo stick with vermicelli in Hanoi. The stall is simple with two wooden tables arranged close to pathway. The most distinctive feature of Lady Nga’s bun cha stall is smell of bamboo grilled on charcoal stove.

Like other dishes, sauce plays a very important role in grilled pork with vermicelli. Apart from putting garlic in steep with rice vinegar to create sour flavor, the master also used boiled dracontomelum fruit to make the sauce clear. Dracontomelum vinegar is not as sour as rice vinegar.

Coming to Vietnam, you will enjoy many special dishes vary in different regions around the beautiful countryin the Southeast Asia. With each dish that you have the opportunity to enjoy, will leave a special imprinttwisted by the unforgettable taste and its bold Vietnam.

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