Banh cuon in Hanoi

goi choon start

Banh cuon is a term used to describe rice flour rolls in Vietnam. I was wondering along the streets of Hanoi when I decided to pop into a street stall to try one of their offering. I don’t quite remember where this was as I was just walking along and taking in the culture but it was really good.

Goi Cuon stall

The Northern part of Vietnam (including Hanoi) has a slightly different varient of Banh cuon. It’s a “rolled cake” which contains pork, shrimp herbs and rice vermicelli wrapped in rice paper.

Goi Cuon woman

You can see them prepare it fresh right in front of you!

Goi Cuon plate

This version also has a healthy sprinkling of pork floss on top and it’s served with a dipping sauce which has lime, sugar and fish sauce called Nuoc cham.

Goi Cuon preparation

It costs VND 15,000 for a plate (about RM 2.40) for a plate of four rolls and unsweetened iced tea is on the house.

Goi Cuon dip

I love the yin and yang concept of Vietnamese cuisine – they always have raw vegetables and herbs to complement the dish.

Goi Cuon dish

The dipping sauce is something awesome too. I ate it without the dipping sauce first but with the nuoc cham it makes it all the more better. Street food FTW in Vietnam!

Bun dau in Hanoi, Vietnam

bun dau hanoi

Bun dau is the cousin of the famous bun cha. It is essentially the same but bun cha has grilled pork as its main meat dish instead of tofu. I was wondering around the streets of the Old Quarter of Hanoi, Vietnam when I saw this small bun dau place that is full of locals.

bun dau shop

The place piqued my interest, even though I’m not a huge fan of tofu. I reckon I could use some food to wash down all the fresh local draft beer that I had. smirk

bun dau frying

The bun dau place is quite a simple setup with a place for frying and cutting tofu and the ubiquitous pieces of meat in flour and seating arrangements inside and outside.

bun dau meal

I was overwhelmed by the chunks of rice vermicelli, deep fried tofu, and the veritable forest of herbs and vegetables that came so I started eating it with the dipping sauce (made of fish sauce – as most Vietnamese dishes are).

bun dau girls

There was a table of three girls sitting beside me and after watching me for a while, one of them came over and showed me how to mix the dipping sauce:

bun dau dipping sauce

You’re supposed to put some bird’s eye chilli and squeeze a couple of limes into it for the taste to shine through.

bun dau me

It tastes pretty good but I have to admit, I had a lot of trouble finishing it coz I really dislike tofu.

bun dau clientale

The place attracts a lot of people from different walks in life – I saw everyone from office workers to stall owners at the Old Quarter pulling up a chair and ordering some bun dau.

bun dau

The chunks of rice vermicelli have a very interesting texture. It has no taste per se, but the way it rolls around and unravels in your mouth when you dip it is quite an epicurean experience that is worth noting.

The best part is that it only costs VND 20,000 with a bottle of Bia Ha Noi! That works out to slightly over RM 3 – not too shabby for a tofu dish. ;)

Hoa Tran @ Springvale

hoatran.jpg
Hoa Tran @ Springvale

I went with my friends to Springvale for lunch this afternoon. Or
was it yesterday afternoon? I’m very, very disturbed at the disastrous
loss of my short term memory, which I hope is not permanent. I also
hope that I can remember things I’ve only said two minutes ago without
having concentrate for two full minutes but that’s a different story.

ht_int1.jpg
Interior 1 of Hoa Tran

Anyway, I’m pretty sure it happened today, yeah I’m sure of it. We
went to Springvale and went hunting for someplace to eat where we
haven’t eaten before. We stumbled upon this place called Hoa Tran
somewhere in Springvale.

ht_int2.jpg
Interior 2 of Hoa Tran

The interior was pretty nice, had some statues and such around the
place. I had broken rice with pork chop and everything. It’s very nice,
especially when you pour all of the chili on top of the dish. I’ve
always used to do that since I first had broken rice in Good Dragon at
Monash College. I had a friend in college who used to mix every sauce
(oyster sauce, fish sauce, soy sauce, BBQ sauce, chili sauce etc)
together with salt and SUGAR and use it as a dip. Sick, sick fuck.
That’s what I thought until I tasted it. It was strangely disturbing,
yet great!

ht_brkrc.jpg
Vietnamese Broken Rice with everything :)

I digress. Anyway, the pork chop broken rice (with everything hehe!)
was good. The egg tasted really nice for some reason and the sauce was
great too. It’s cheap as well, it cost A$7 and it comes with soup.
Anyway, everyone came back to my place after that and we watched movies
and I copied some HK movies over to my hard disk. I love showing the
explicit version of Prodigy – Smack My Bitch Up and Cradle of Filth -
From the Cradle to the Enslave to people who hasn’t watched them
before. :)

Link of the day: Buy Ecstasy and speed legally over the counter! [news.com.au],

So called “party drugs”, including ecstasy and speed, would be
sold in licensed drug shops by medically-qualified staff at prices
which would undercut the black market.

Vote for the Greens! I would do so too if I lived in NSW and I was a citizen. :)

P/S – Please read veritas’s report below. He tool 4 hours to write
it (not including the pictures) and many hours of actual field work.

Suzanne's Corner

I had lunch at Suzanne’s Corner with my girlfriend today. The place is
beside Pathlab in Blacksmith Road, I heard of it through my father, who
gave me a brochure.

The place is run by Vietnam born Suzanne who is also a member of Wesley
Church. I had Vietnamese Pork Chop Rice (RM3.50) and my girlfriend had
Vietnamese Chicken Rice (RM3.50). We also shared a plate of Vietnamese
Spring Rolls (RM3.50). It’s probably the only place in Sibu you can get
Vietnamese food and the food is really good. Friendly service too, so if
you’re in the vicinity, do head over there. Don’t forget to try the New
Zealand Cheese Cake (RM4.50). =D

Vietnamese Pork Chop Rice

Suzanne of Suzanne’s Corner

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