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Updated by Lavinia Woolf on Jun 18, 2014
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A Culinary Haven - Must Try Vietnamese Dishes

The gastronomic delights in Vietnam are impressive. The food is health, often served fresh and it is simply delicious. Food in the country is cheap and from any of the Ho Chi Minh serviced apartments you can access the famous restaurants and markets that serve authentic Vietnamese cuisine.

1

Bun Cha

Bun Cha

A specialty in Hanoi Bun Cha is a dish served only during lunchtime. It is prepared with pork meat, fish sauce, vermicelli noodles, local herbs and spices. Grilled pork meat and meatballs are added to a soupy base. This is usually accompanied with crispy spring rolls with a pork or crab filling. For an added punch try out the garlic vinegar sauce.

2

Bo La Lot

Bo La Lot

Crumbs and scraps are wrapped in a betel leaf, grilled over charcoal and then plated up with lemongrass and fish sauce. The filling in the betel lead is a mixture of minced beef and tangy herbs. You can eat them as a separate meal or you could as a part of the 'beef served seven ways' platter. Another variety of Bo La Lot is the one that is wrapped in lettuce and with a rice vermicelli herbal filling. This comes with a nuoc mam a fish sauce that is famous in the country.

3

Pho-Pho

Pho-Pho

is the breakfast meal of the country; it is made from a nutritious and tasty broth that produces a sensational fragrance. The spice that is primarily incorporate is star anise; this is combined with rice noodles and a type of protein such as beef or chicken. The most interesting part about this dish is that each Pho may taste different because people can choose any topping from herbs, Vietnamese mint or bean sprouts. Lime and chili is the final addition to Pho. The markets in Vietnam are some of the best places to try Pho; if you are not too picky about where you eat the street vendors make delicious Pho that you should try out. Pho is even used as a cure for hangovers, so if you feel queasy after a heavy session at the bar then a bowl of Pho will help you spring back to life.

4

Banh xeo

Banh xeo

Wafer thin and crispy on the edges Banh xeo is a big pancake that is yellowish in color because of turmeric. The mixture of sliced pork meat, bean sprouts and fresh prawns are inserted to the middle and then made into a wrap. Lettuce and fresh Vietnamese herbs are the usual culprits that are brought along with this dish. You will also notice chili and nuoc mam dipping sauce at your table. Banh xeo is a safe option for anyone to taste because the meat is not too spicy.

5

Cha Ca

Cha Ca

A northern Vietnamese dish, cha ca is prepared using a white fish that is fried in turmeric, dill and spring onions, and then served with rice vermicelli, peanuts, fresh herbs and chili. The dill gives out a fragrant smell and adds to the strong flavor of Cha ca. Cha ca is a much loved dish in Vietnam to the extent that an entire street in the old quarter in Hanoi is named 'Cha ca street'.

6

Thit Kho

Thit Kho

A southern Vietnamese dish also known as caramelized pork in a clay pot, Thit Kho is juicy and delicious. The main ingredient of this recipe is pork belly; it is slow cooked until caramelized in coconut milk and boiled eggs. The restaurant at Somerset Vista Ho Chi Minh City serves some of the best Thit Kho.