(All Vietnam) – For a long time, street food is a rustic, inexpensive but very tasty food in Vietnam. Food and Agriculture Organization defines that: “Street foods are ready-to-eat foods and beverages prepared and sold by vendors and hawkers especially in streets and other similar public places” But in Vietnam, street food not only represents practical, low-cost food but also the local food culture.
Street food is noted because people from all economic classes, especially students, eat on the roadside. Street food is usually sold in busy public areas such as pavements, school areas, markets… The low cost, accessibility and convenience of street food are key factors explaining their growing popularity. The diversity of street food is extensive. Here are some prominent street foods in Hanoi.
Sweet soups (Che)
Sweet soup is a famous for its variety and wonderful taste. There are many kinds of sweet soup: lotus seeds (che hat sen) , green rice flakes (che com), black beans (che do den), red beans (che dau do), corn sweet soup (che ngo), Ba Cot soup (che Ba Cot)…
Hanoians eats sweet soup all year around. No matter it is in hot summer days, in cool autumn or cold winter, we can enjoy sweet soup. Ingredients are so simple and vary. But cooking sweet soup requires an elegant and skillful way. Some famous sweet soup stores in Hanoi are on Dao Duy Tu street, Nguyen Binh Khiem street or “Bobochacha store” on Cua Bac street. Because of simple ingredients, the price is cheap and suitable for everyone to enjoy sweet soups, just about VND10,000 – 15,000.
Rice flour cake (Banh gio)
Rice flour cake is a traditional nosh of Vietnam. You can enjoy a dish of rice flour cake with just about VNDD15,000 – 20,000. It is best served hot and often kept in a bamboo cover to retain heat. Unwrapping the bamboo, we can see a white and smooth cake inside. We usually eat rice flour cake with soy bean or iced tea. Ingredients of rice flour cake are rice, minced pork, mushroom and jew’s ear. Rice flour cake is just a simple and inexpensive dish but unforgettable food to everyone. Some favourite rice flour cake store is on Thuy Khue street, Chua Lang street or on Nguyen Cong Tru market
Green papaya salad with beef jerky (Nom bo kho)
Green papaya salad with beef jerky is one of the bestselling noshes. This salad is a mixture of papaya, carrot, spinach, herb and meat. It becomes a tasty, bold, crunchy and pleasant dish. Some favourite green papaya salad with beef jerky stores are near Hoan Kiem Lake, “Lim Store” on Hang Bun street, Duong Thanh street or Nghia Tan market.
Nem chua rán (Fried fermented pork roll)
Fried fermented pork roll is a favorite nosh of many people, especially teenagers. The price is about VNDD5,000 per roll. Fermented pork roll includes cured pork, shredded pork skins mixed with flour. After frying, fermented pork roll will be eat with chili sauce to make a unique flavor. Some popular fried fermented pork roll store are on Hang Bong, Ta Hien or Trinh Hoai Duc street.
Fried cake (Banh ran)
Fried cake is popular and rustic food with everyone. It is sold on many streets but the most delicious store is on Lac Long Quan street. There are many kinds of fried cake. Fried sweet cakes include bánh chuối rán (fried banana cake), bánh khoai (fried sweet potato cake). Fried salty cakes add meat inside.
Fried banana cake is a mixture of sliced banana, flour, sugar. Potato slices are mix with batter. Making two kinds of cake is the same. After preparing the mixture, you slowly dip it in boiling cooking oil. The cake will turn yellow and has charming smell. Both cake is best served in hot. We can easily catch the image of people gather at the roadside pavement and enjoy kinds of fried cake.
Food is an important part of religious observance and spiritual ritual for Vietnamese. Enjoying street foods becomes a culture and lifestyle of Vietnamese residents and unmissable things in foreign visitor’s mind.