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5 Foods You Must Try in Vietnam

Posted on October 21, 2014 by blog1 in Vietnam Food tagged Vietnamese Food

If you’re traveling to Vietnam, it won’t be long before your taste buds are calling out for action. With so many delicious food options found all over the country, you may be spending more time sampling foods than visiting all the major sites… and that’s OK! Food is just as big a part of “culture” as anything else! So if you’re visiting Vietnam and are ready for a real gastronomical tour, there are a few names on the “must-try list” that you simply cannot skip over. A few won’t surprise you, but some you may have never heard of!

 

1. Pho

 

Of course pho is going to be first on the list. When the world thinks about Vietnamese food, pho is always the first thing that comes to mind. Lucky for you, this iconic bowl of noodles and chicken/beef can be found all over the country- from north to south and everywhere in between. Flavors and styles may vary a bit (north tends to have more seasonings/spices and the south tends to be sweeter), but the main ingredients themselves are seldom altered. Rice noodles seeping in a savory meat broth with chicken or beef and delicious fresh vegetables... you know how it goes... it's pho! 

 

2. Banh Mi

 

Another staple food for visitors to try, the Banh Mi reflects the French influence throughout Vietnam. From pork, beef and pate to chili, vegetables, cheese, fried eggs and fresh herbs, Vietnam’s national sandwich (all wedged in between a freshly baked baguette) is guaranteed to satisfy all travelers at any time of the day. If you can’t stomach the idea of eating soup for breakfast, need a quick pick-me-up for lunch or a late night snack- this is the food you should be reaching for!

 

3. Bun Cha

 

For travelers passing through the north of Vietnam, this is the dish you need to keep your eyes open for. Famous in Hanoi, Bun Cha is the perfect dish to eat for lunch. A cold plate of rice vermicelli noodles is accompanied by smoky, barbecued pork, fresh herbs and a deliciously salty/sweet dipping sauce. Eat individually or combine them all together for a delectable dish that defines the capital.

 

4. Cao Lau

 

Quite possibly one of the most intricate and unique dishes in all of Vietnam, Cao Lau- at least the real Cao Lau is only found in the central Vietnam town of Hoi An. A noodle based pork dish, everything that goes into the plate (traditionally) comes from within the town. The specialty noodles and croutons are produced within small, family-owned factories in Hoi An (only a few families create the noodles), the water used to make the stock is drawn from a well inside the Old Town, the herbs are picked from the local vegetable garden (Tra Que) and the meat comes (as always) from a local, fresh source. A smoky, spicy and filling meal, this local icon will make your taste buds (and your wallets) jump with delight.

 

5. Banh Xeo


Head down south to try this delicious, crispy Vietnamese version of the pancake. Though the pancake ingredients are quite simple (rice flour, water and turmeric powder), the ingredients stuffed inside are what make it so delicious. Expect slices of tender pork or bits of shrimp, bean sprouts, onion, peanuts and fresh herbs to be tucked inside, and don’t be surprised if you taste of hint of coconut milk in the mix either (the south is always adding a sweet touch to everything). As with most other Vietnamese plates, Banh Xeo won’t break the bank, so order up plate after plate to stuff yourself happy with this delicious Vietnamese favorite.

 




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