Vietnam food culture


Steamed rice – A popular Vietnam food culture of an agriculture country

Rice is used for worshipping in many Vietnamese temples.People said that it originates from the Mother Godness Worshipping, the most long–standing belief in Vietnam. Yes rice is a big thing out here. The very first written characters constituting the word “Happiness” in ancient Vietnamese is the image of many rice plants and a square symbolizing a paddy field. Rice isn’t only happiness, it really forms Vietnamese. Rice is a typical thing in Vietnam food culture

Many main dishes and snacks in Vietnam are made from rice: boiled rice in daily meal, rice porridge, steamed rice, glutinous rice cake, well-known Banh Chung (square cake) and uncountable made-from-rice dishes from every region in Vietnam.

Even the universal, Pho that you definitely hear about is made from rice as well. Rice is the center of everything, like a sun lying in the center of the whole solar planet.

Considering that rice is very important, Vietnamese has been always developing their farming method and new rice genres. Many Vietnam rice varieties exported to all over the world are renowned for their distinctive flavor, yet only when coming to Vietnam and have boiled rice with soya sauce pickled egg-plants, your adventure to Vietnam is considered perfect.

Common fish sauce bowl in a meal

If you believe the way people eat forms their society, you must feel excited to learn about the fish sauce in every meal of Vietnamese. You often finish your meal  in silence without putting your fork into others’? There are no transparent meal portions among Vietnam family members in a meal and they must consider thoughtfully how much they should eat since all the food together is put in a tray.

In the center of the tray, there goes the renowned fish sauce bowl which is used by all the eaters and supposed to form Vietnamese characteristics. Some says that the common fish sauce bowl represents Vietnamese solidarity, yet some others say the bowl is the root of many bad personalities such as jealousy and embezzlement. Whatever it is, there is one thing for sure that fish sauce contributes a great culture feature in Vietnamese food. Vietnam is known as a wet rice farming country. Animal breeding was not well developed and people mainly live on vegetable and aquatic thing such as shrimp, fish and snail. As a result, boiled dishes are the most popular, and fish sauce is a certain demand. Now, Vietnamese has a hundred kind of sauce, applied for different dishes and different regions and four different seasons. Fish sauce is something unique in Vietnam food culture

Snack paradise to venture into

Vietnam peasants used to have a lot of free time after the busy crop in the past, so preparing some nosh to eat is a certainly a result of the circumstances. Sweet potato is a prime example for the case. It is considered the most popular nosh in the countryside. Ever experienced Vietnam home-staying? You must try boiled sweet potato, cassava and peanuts are the most typically Vietnamese snack – of course without salt or sugar added.
And if you dare venture beyond the standard ones, there are surely bizarre things to try. The best place to taste purely Vietnamese snacks is to have them right in a family or on the sidewalks along every street. Tasting a fertilized egg at 4pm in a breezy afternoon may scare you, yet it is one of the most popular snacks out here and is considered extremely nutritious.

Besides varieties of wonderful noodle, made-of-rice cakes, bean sweet soups you may be too shy to eat a bowl of pig raw blood soups. Does it originate from Totem belief? Not many Vietnamese questions that when eating the dish. All they want to do is to choose a right restaurant and wait to be served the raw blood soups with Vietnamese spirit.

Of unity and diversity

If there is anything to conclude about Vietnamese food, it can only be the unpredictable diversity. Each region-North, Central and South has something to be proud of. The influence of Chinese and French culture during colonial time adds more to the vibrant scenes of gastronomy. It is hard to describe and compare the specific features of cuisines from each region as there is more than a capital of food in Vietnam. While Hanoi offers some authentic and original food experience, Hue boasts about its royal trait and Ho Chi Minh City is proud that it is the most inclusive place when it comes to dining. You will have to discover it yourself and decide which one you like the most!

Different from the toast-butter-jam-cereal culture, breakfasts in Vietnam come in a variety of dishes, from noodles to rice to baguette. A famous and common dish is ¨Pho¨, while you can open your horizon of food knowledge by trying ¨xoi xeo, ¨chao suon¨… For lunch and dinner, people have rice with a vegetable broth and some types of second dish. These include tofu, chicken, pork, beef or potatoes! This is where regional difference comes into play, with various types of processing and adding spice to food.

Besides local dish, you are likely to run into many international food scenes in big cities. In Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh City, Indian, Japanese, Korean, Spanish, Greek and Chinese food can be found in touristic areas. Pizza and pasta are getting there, though only certain class has access to this relatively expensive dish (compared with local food choice). Fast food chains are scantier than most other countries in the world: you may be disappointed as there is no McDonalds. KFC is spreading and so is Pizza Hut. Nonetheless, what is the point of coming half way through the earth to have a bite of burger?

Common words used in Vietnam food culture

pho (fol) = soup

bo (ball) = beef

ga (gaw) = chicken

gao (gow) = uncooked rice

com (gum) = cooked rice

nuoc mam (nook mum) = fish sauce

bun (poom) = noodles

cuon (coom) = salad or lettuce

In conclusion, Vietnam food culture is a great thing to check out. You’ll get a chance to taste different food in Vietnam to see how yummy it is.

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