Thursday, October 11, 2007

Vietnamese Cuisine

As I will be going on an Asia tour this November through Hong Kong, Beijing, and Vietnam, I am doing some research on Vietnamese cuisine--just in case some if its not-so-savory sounding foods (dog meat, for instance) disturb my semi-vegetarian diet during my stay.

According to, a website I would strongly recommend for research on Vietnam, the French had a large influence on Vietnamese food because of their colonization of Vietnam. One obvious influence is French bread.

According to, one popular dish, with noticeable French roots, is the "Vietnamese baguette, French bread containing paté, Vietnamese mayo, different selections of Vietnamese cold cuts and deli (a large variety, most commonly with ham, head cheese, and a Vietnamese bologna), pickled daikon and carrot, cucumber slices. Often garnished with coriander, black pepper."

Another influence on Vietnam's cuisine was neighboring China. There are many similarities between Chinese food and Vietnamese; rice is a staple part of diet, there are a lot of vegetables, and many people eat meats like chicken and pork. China's "baozi" inspired the Vietnamese Banh bao.

Some of Vietnam's more "exotic" meats include fertilized duck eggs (eating a nearly-developed embryo), snake, soft-shell turtle, and goat. Some of these are, however, according to,

"cocktail delicacies" with alcohol, and are not considered typical everyday

According to Wikipedia, "Its [Vietnam's] characteristic flavors are sweet (sugar), spicy (Serrano peppers), sour (lime), nuoc mam (fish sauce), and flavored by a variety of mint and basil."

Vietnam is also famous for its noodle dishes, which are acclaimed around the world.

And although dog meat and fertilized duck eggs may sound strange, keep in mind that American monstrosities like hot dogs and French fries probably seem weird to a lot of people!


  1. Anonymous1:20 AM

    Vietnamese food is really delicious...Try it and feel :X
    (A girl from Vietnam) :X

  2. You are such a smart girl and you're so young too( younger than me 1,2 years old). I like your writing about my country's food. It is so good that I will meet you in my school soon( my school is American International School).I hope you will have a good trip to my country, Vietnam! If you free, please go to my blog, take a look and comment to me. Thanks
    A Vietnamese girl
    Mai(Polly,English name)

  3. Anonymous8:32 AM

    Welcome to Vietnam!!!

  4. Actually, other then those odd sounding foods, Vietnamese do have lots of other delicious cooking as well. May be next time you could try to research on the delicious food of other country rather then the odd ones. It may kind of make ourself feel more positive and brighter. This world is becoming more and more disappointing, that's why we have to always think positively so then we have the power to make good changes to the world.

    I've never read your book, well... yet! I have only heard of you through the newspaper in Hong Kong! (By the way, did you have a nice trip in Hong Kong?)
    It is surprising to know that you are a feminist. I mean, myself is a feminist as well, but know nothing about feminism when I was your age.
    Anyway, hope you have a good trip in Hong Kong!!

    Ki Ki
    (by the way, my Chinese name and your Chinese name sounds the same in Cantonese. ^^)

  5. Welcome to VietNam. Have a nice trip in HCM city

  6. Haha :D It seems that the most impressive thing to you in Vietnam is Vietnamese food, right? In Ho Chi Minh City, did you come to China Town (aka, District 5), the Chinese food have been cooked in Vietnamese way, very delicious. Anyway, many Vietnamese cannot eat dog-meat. And you know, Korean eat dog-meat too! But I sure that the fertilized duck eggs is the unique food in the world!

  7. Anonymous7:58 AM

    hihi... thanks for ur concern about VNese food. I like fertilized duck eggs best. What about u?

  8. Anonymous4:02 AM

    Did you buy "Ao Dai" in Vietnam? If you want i can show you more special food in Vietnam