Vietnam foods list - The must-try specialties of Vietnamese ethnic minority
vietnam foods list

Vietnam foods list of the ethnic minority in Northwest

You might see so many articles about Vietnam foods list. How about the special foods of ethnic minorities? The most unique and impressive traditional foods of ethnic minorities in Vietnam is in the northwest area. The ethnic communities in this area do not only have impressive cultures but also unique cuisine cultures. That is the reason why northwestern areas is always an interesting place that the locals want to come once in their whole life.

Thang Co – The must-try one in Vietnam foods list of the ethnic minority

Thang Co is a traditional food of H’mong community. However, its origin is from the south of China. Thang Co has more than 200 years old. Therefore, it is a must-try one in Vietnam foods list that tourists should not miss when traveling to the northwestern area of Vietnam.

thang co is a must-have dish in vietnam foods list

Thang Co is a special dish of local people in Sa Pa. It is a soup of horseflesh and viscera. – Image: @Ngovgiang.

The origin Thang Co is made totally from horseflesh. The ingredients include meat, bone, and even viscera. However, people nowadays use beef and buffalo meat instead. For a traditional Thang Co, there are twelve different spices. There are some main spices such as cardamom, cinnamon, ginger, and so on. Especially, Thang Co leaves are the must-have ingredient. Horseflesh and viscera are cleaned carefully and marinated, then put into the soup.

When visiting Sapa or Ha Giang in the northwestern area in Vietnam, do not forget to try Thang Co with grilled corn cake and drink some cups of corn wine. It is a perfect combination to enjoy the taste of wild local lifestyle.

Smoked buffalo meat – Must-have dish in traditional Tet holiday of Tai Dam minority group

This is a specialty of the Tai Dam minority group which usually is available in traditional Tet holiday of the group. Due to the special taste and meaning, smoked buffalo meat is a must-try dish in Vietnam foods list when foreigners come to visit Vietnam.

smoked buffalo meat is a special dish in Vietnam foods list

Smoked buffalo meat is a special dish every traditional Tet holiday of the minority groups – Image: @_lyanh97.

People usually use the best part of buffalo meat to make this dish. It is the muscle part of the buffalo. The reason is that this type of meat has a good smell and the string meat is clear. Local people use some common spices such as chilies, ginger. There is a special spice which is “mac khen”. This is a unique pepper of the local. It will be still on the string meat when you eat. Mac khen is one of the most important spices which make the flavor of smoked buffalo meat.

After marinating meat, they hang them on a shelf with the smoke from charcoal. Therefore, when you eat this dish, there will be the smell of smoke. However, it is not too strong. In contrast, it has a good smell and makes the unique taste of this dish. There is no preservative but they still can keep this dish for one month. The best taste it has is when eating it with local corn wine.

Grilled moss from Thai minority group in Yen Bai province

Thai minority group considers dishes which are from the moss as their specialty. And they only treat their special guests. Due to the special spices that the locals use when grilling moss and the special recipe, this is the top best dishes in Vietnam foods list. There are so many places in Vietnam which have moss. But grilled moss in Yen Bai is the most famous one. The reason is that water, soil, and weather conditions in this place is special that it can produce the best moss. Moreover, the spices that they use are from the wild forest. Thus, it has a unique taste that you cannot find anywhere else.

grilled moss in the northwestern area is a specialty that the locals only use to treat their special guests.

Grilled moss is a specialty in Muong Lo which is only available in spring.

Normally, moss in Yen Bai is available in the spring. The locals harvest moss and dry them to save for the rest time of the year. Therefore, if you want to taste the fresh grilled moss, you should visit Yen Bai from January to April. Moss, when harvested from the spring, will be cleaned clearly with spring water so that it could keep the origin smell. The locals use some kinds of seeds which are only available in the local forest to marinate moss. After that, they use Stachyphrynium placentarium or dong leaves to cover moss then bury in ash. The last step is to hang them on hot charcoal until the green sauce leaks out from dong leaves. You can feel the fresh and cool taste of moss. Moreover, the special taste of grilled moss will make you unable to forget by the amazing combination of different spices.

Khau Nhuc – A special dish in the Vietnam foods list

Khau Nhuc is a dish whose main ingredient is pork. It is a traditional dish of Tay and Nung minority group in Lang Son province. In the past, it came to Vietnam from Guangzhou province in China. Due to the decoration of Khau Nhuc dish, it has a great meaning that you should mark as a must-try in your Vietnam foods list. Khau Nhuc is decorated as a hill. It indicates the hope of local people of perseverance and willpower in life. Hence, Tay and Nung minority group always have this dish on their special occasions such as traditional Tet or wedding celebrating.

khau nhuc is in vietnam foods list but the origin is from china

Khau Nhuc decoration on the dish has the shape of a hill which represents for the prosperity – Image: @Strawberry.hamchoi.

Khau Nhuc has the original taste only when people can choose the fresh pork in the belly part. After marinating with spices and Tau Soi leaves which are only available in Lang Son province, the locals will roast to make it have the dark yellow color. After that, it would be heated up with water distillation method for 4-5 hours until pork is rotten.

Its taste is the perfect blend of different normal spices and local unique leaves. Moreover, slices of pork are rotten but still keeps the original taste of the main ingredient.