There is a saying in Vietnam ‘in our country we believe that your quality of life depends on how much you enjoy your food. To be satisfied with our food is our top priority‘, and I total agree.
Vietnamese cuisine can be described as 3 countries in one bowl, the North, Centre and South, each of which has it own distinctive style. What binds the food culture together is the country’s staple carb – rice – and the fresh, fresh ingredients, specifically herbs which are an essential part of every dish.
During our trip we visited markets in the North, Hanoi, Central, Hue and Hoi An and of course in the South Saigon and Mekong Delta. I’ve chosen some of my fave pics for you to have a look.
Here we see, 2 types of coriander, lemon basil, morning glory, spinach, rice paddy herb, mustard sprouts, bitter herb (Rau dang), garlic chives, watercress, chinese celery, and much much more.
So a vietnamese person will visit a market up to 4 times a day, to ensure their ingredients are as fresh as possible. Here we are on a visit to an early weekday market in Hoi An.
I was in my friggin element.
Of course the markets are not like ours at home, so you do have to check yourself and hold your nose.
Mackerel stuffed with herbs, marinating….. ooooh lovely….
This amazing old woman, who has been selling noodles, her whole life, had a little cottage industry going, with a family member slicing sheets of gelatinous rice into noodles.
Everyone comes to market…..
I loved the sweets: dried coconut, fruit, rice crispy bars…. fudge made from coconut cream, nothing processed, everything made, with everything they have available. No such thing as gluten free here.
I had to show you this amazing picture of the Vietnamese version of a Four Square, local dairy. Everything available, from toothpaste to beer, even live produce floating in the baskets…..
‘To serve a good meal is to show your regard to your fellow people‘
Trinh Diem Vy.