Vietnamese Food: More Than Pho

When most people think of Vietnamese food, they automatically think of pho. While pho is an amazing, mouth-watering noodle soup with a meaty broth, there are plenty of other dishes and cuisines that people tend to overlook.


For example, banh xeo is a crunchy fried crepe filled with bean sprouts, meat, and onions. It is dipped in sweet fish sauce, known as nuoc mam. banhxeoThe name, “banh xeo” literally translates into, “sizzling cake.” That refers to the sounds made when the batter is first poured onto a hot pan. Bun bo hue is known for its well balanced flavors of sweetness, sourness, and spiciness. Its flavor and base derives from lemon grass. Often included in this noodle soup is oxtail, beef, tofu, and thick noodles. Another great dish would be com tam, also known as “broken rice.” It is a full meal with rice and meat with pickled veggies to the side. Most of the time, if you order this dish, you receive a small bowl of fish sauce (nuoc mam) and another bowl of soup broth. Bo kho is a stew filled with chunks of beef and carrots. Often times, it is eaten with toasted bread that you dip into the stew or thin strands of noodles. With plenty of other colorful dishes, Vietnamese food is much more than just pho. 

Like many people know, rice, known as “com” in Vietnamese, normally makes up the three meals a day for the Vietnamese. When families eat, they usually gather around and distribute the food. Each have their own individual bowls of rice and a pair of chopsticks. Along with the rice, canh is made. Canh is broth made that tends to be based on meat flavors. One well known canh is canh chua. “Canh chua” translates to “sour soup.” Often times, this canh includes, tofu, shrimp, tomatoes, bean sprouts, canh chua.jpgfish, and pineapple. Other popular dishes eaten alongside rice are pickled vegetables, boiled vegetables, tofu, caramelized fish, and other meaty dishes. At the dinner table, your elders are the first to sit and eat. When you are finished eating, many tend to place their chopsticks on the bowl. In Vietnamese culture, many are encouraged to eat every last grain of rice. It is believed that the more rice you have left over may result in bad luck in your love life or your life in general.


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