Saturday, 30 January 2010
North Vietnamese Cuisine
One of the great dishes here is called Bun Cha: It's noodels with pork. We had it at a restaurant called, wait for it: "Bun Cha". It's not quite as simple as just noodles of pork though. Here's what happens:
Up the grimy looking staircase we go to sit at a table in not much of a better state. But the friendly waitresses bring over a large tray piled high with fresh mint, coriander and lettuce along with a large plate of rice noodles and freshly chopped limes. They disappear for a second and return with the desired "Bun Cha", which is floating on top of beautiful chopped green papaya in beef stock. The pork comes two ways: in little fritters, and as a sweet-cure bacon. Yum! and if that's not enough, there's a vast side helping of spring rolls. It's then up to us to decide how much of the raw chopped garlic and chilli we want to mix into the Bun Cha! Admittedly we both got a little carried away today and the result? World record smashing garlic breath! We even tried eating toothpaste later in the afternoon once our extreme cases of halitosis had somehow gone from bad to much worse! It did not work, by the way. This place is permanently packed with locals, but shuts early...
At the weekend Night Market, the Canadians Ti and Marc join us for Pho and spring rolls.
Another great thing to have for lunch is Bun Bo: this is noodles with beef. Of course it's not that simple. Ours came with some spicy chopped peanuts.