Vietnamese dishes are light, healthy and flavorful. Their main staple is rice which is grown in the country. Most dishes are prepared with fresh local vegetables and herbs such as mint, Thai basil, lemongrass, ginger, chili, lime and long coriander. Fish sauce, shrimp paste and spices like cinnamon are used to season the dishes. Vietnamese food is all about the balance of the five tastes; salty, sweet, bitter, spicy, sour.
Vietnamese cuisine aside, this country makes excellent pastries and deserts to go with the rich Vietnamese coffee.
What I ate in Hoi An;
1, Cao Lau
Cao Lau is a Hoi An noodle dish served at a room temperature perfect for their warm climate. I like it with a lot of fresh herbs, crispy wonton chips and slices of roasted pork. Cold beer makes the meal complete!
2, White Rose
White Roses are little dumplings in rice paper with minced shrimp filling seasoned with the staple spices. They make a light and perfect appetizer.
3, Chicken Rice
Delicately flavored rice served with tender chicken meat, herbs and chicken broth.
4, Lemongrass Pork Skewers
Pork marinated and seasoned with local herbs and spices on fragrant lemongrass skewers.
5, Snapper Baked in Banana Leaf with Steamed Rice
Fresh caught snapper baked in a banana leaf served with salty-sweet ginger sauce.
*2-5 were prepared at Chon Mon Alarcarte Restaurant. Address: 57B Nguyen Phuc Chu Hoi An
What I ate in Saigon;
1, Banh mi
Banh mi is a Vietnamese style sandwich made with Chicken, pork, beef, or Vietnamese sausage, vegetables and chili sauce on fresh French bread.
2, Pho Noodle Soup
There are many variations to this well-known dish and every restaurant has its own unique taste.
3, Fried Noodles with Vegetables and Seafood
Walked into this really local joint and had a communication issue ( no English menu ) which turned out to be a blessing…it was really good!
4, Croissants and Vietnamese Coffee
Western world, be aware. These people here know how to make them right; thanks to the French. The coffee has the distinct taste I love.
5, Dragon Fruits and Mangoes
Freshly prepared from the local market. Delicious and healthy breakfast.