Vietnamese traditional foods through noodles in each regions (Part.1)
Banh Cuon

Noodles recipes throughout Vietnam (Part.1)

Besides Pho, the most popular Vietnam traditional foods, each region in Vietnam has its own kind of noodles. Trying these dishes is a great experience but learning how to make them is another brand new journey. In fact, there is an interesting thing in cooking Vietnamese food is that you don’t need to follow the exact amount of ingredients as Western cuisine. You are able to adjust everything to meet your taste. So are you ready to join us?

Rolling Pho (Pho Cuon), Deep-fried Pho (Pho Chien) – the Northern Vietnam traditional foods

To most foreigners, Pho is a kind of noodle with soup. However, if you take a dip look in Vietnam cuisine, you will recognize that we eat Pho in many ways. Let’s start with Rolling Pho and Deep-fried Pho, the siblings of the Vietnam traditional foods Pho which is famous all over the world.

Rolling Pho and Deep-fried Pho, the siblings of Vietnamese traditional foods, Pho – Image: Instagram/@fuongsfood.

Rolling Pho (Pho Cuon)

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The Vietnamese traditional foods – Rolling Pho (Pho Cuon) – Image: inspirebyliiq.com.

Ingredients

  • Beef.
  • Noodles (Banh Pho) (a whole flat Pho without cutting into strips). You can use rice paper (to make spring rolls) instead.
  • Fresh herbs and vegetables. Lettuce and cilantro are recommended, but you can use whatever you like either. 
  • Salt, pepper, and five-spice powder.
  • Dipping sauce: Carrots, young papayas, fish sauce, vinegar, water, sugar, garlic, and chilis.

Method

  • Marinate beef with salt, pepper, minced garlic, and five-spice powder. Keep in the fridge for about 20 minutes.
  • Clean vegetables and fresh herbs and set aside.
  • Heat the pan with some oil. Fry minced garlic then put all marinated beef into the pan and stir about one minute or when it turns grey. Taste it with salt and pepper in need.
  • Put a piece of lettuce, some cilantro and 3-4 pieces of beef on it then roll tightly like a sushi roll. If you put too many fillings, the Pho cover may be broken.

Dipping sauce:

As Vietnamese traditional foods, dipping sauce plays an important role in Rolling Pho.

  • Slice carrots and young papaya into strips and soak in salt water for 20 minutes to make pickles.
  • In another bowl, make a texture of the fish sauce, vinegar, water, sugar with the respective ratio 5:1:3:1. Then add garlic and chili according to your personal taste.
  • Finally, put the pickles into the dipping sauce.

The Rolling Pho is ready. This dish can be served as an appetizer or even a main dish.

Deep-fried Pho (Pho Chien Phong)

With the same main ingredient with Rolling Pho, Deep-fried Pho offer a new greasy way to enjoy the Vietnam traditional foods. The crispy pillow-shaped Pho will be served with a thick sauce of vegetables and beef.

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Deep-fired Pho with Pho “pillow” – Image: www.savourydays.com.

Ingredients

  • Beef.
  • Noodles (Banh Pho) (a whole flat Pho without cutting into strips).
  • Carrots.
  • Bok Choy.
  • Onions.
  • Celeries.
  • Tomatoes.
  • Bell peppers.
  • Green onion.
  • Garlic.
  • Oil.
  • Corn starch
  • Spices: sugar, salt, pepper, oyster sauce.

Method

  • Place three Banh Pho on top of one another and cut into 4cmx4cm square pieces.
  • Slice beef then marinate with sugar first (to make the beef more tender). 10 minutes later, add salt, pepper, and oyster and set for 15 minutes.
  • Cut carrots, bok choy, onions, celeries, tomatoes, and bell peppers in the same shape as Banh Pho.
  • To make the thick sauce, stir carrots, bok choy, onions, celeries, tomatoes, bell peppers, and beef with some water. Mix corn starch with water then pour it down slowly till the texture become thicker.
  • To make the pillow Pho, gently drop Pho square pieces into the hot pan of boiling oil. Wait until they turn golden brown then take out and let the oil drain.
  • Finally, place the Pho pillow in the bottom and put the thick sauce with vegetables and beef on top. Now it’s time to enjoy the crunchy and tasty Pho Chien Phong.

Duck Noodles (Chao Bot Vit) – Central Vietnam traditional foods

Quang Tri is a province in Central of Vietnam. Thanks to the special location, this place used to be an important spot during the Vietnam war. Therefore, there are many historical sites worth your visit in this little province. Furthermore, its specialty, Chao Bot Vit, is one of the most popular Vietnamese traditional foods you should try when being here.

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Duck thick noodles (Chao Bot Vit) – One of the easiest Vietnamese traditional foods to cook at home  – Image: foody.vn.

Ingredient

  • ½ a duck.
  • 0.5kg mixture of rice flour and tapioca starch with the ratio 1:1. Or you can make two different kinds of noodles from these two separated flours.
  • Ginger, onion, chives.
  • White wine (or cooking wine).
  • Spice: salt, pepper, fish sauce, chili powder, oil.

Method

  • Wash the duck with salt water. Smash ginger + salt + white wine and rub it on the duck to release the stinky smell. Let it sit for 20 minutes then wash again with water. Cut the duck into cube pieces.
  • Marinate the duck with onion, salt, chili powder, and pepper.
  • Homemade thick noodles: Mix the flour mixture with a ½ teaspoon of salt. Pour water slowly and mix till it becomes firm dough. After a rest period, roll it out and cut it into long strips.
  • Stir fry the marinated duck with high heat for 8 minutes. Add 500ml water into the pot and stew it until the duck gets softer. Season it with salt and fish sauce to reach your taste 
  • Put the fresh thick noodles right into the pot and wait until they emerge.
  • Finally, scoop into the bowl, use chives, chili, and pepper as decoration.

Conclusion

With the quick tutor above, hope you can easily get straight to the Vietnam traditional foods of each region. What’s more, you are free to add or take out some ingredients and spices to make it your own recipe.