Therefore I’ll give phở as no. Zero which is higher than no. 1 😛
I’ll quickly list here few things that are my favourites
#0. Phở and Bun bo Hue
#31. Rice wine
Ruou de, ruou chuoi, ruou can, ruou nep, ruou thuoc, ruou mo qua, ruou go den… The list of ruou, or rice wine, peculiar to Vietnam goes on. And if you want to drink your ruou with style, the Son Tinh range out of Hanoi is the way to go — apricot, red plum, white ginseng, Minh Mang and passion fruit. They’ve even got their own selection of cocktail recipes. Devil’s fart, anyone?
I don’t like alcohol drinks honestly. I only want to drink with my best friends or people I’m close with. But I have to admit that some home-brewed wines from fruits are really impressive, including cocoa wine in Mekong Delta and red plum wine in North West Vietnam. They’re not too strong, not too sweet. OMG, try one shot then I dare you to resist the second one!
#33. Floating markets in Mekong Delta
Shiny purple eggplants, squat squash and furry zucchini bob on spindly poles far above the jumble of boats and people vying for river space in the Mekong Delta’s floating markets. In the cool dawn light, sellers and patrons jump skilfully from boat to boat — buying, selling and haggling over the day’s fresh produce.
They drop on your head. Fortunately their contents can also drop in your mouth, although you need to open them first. In Vietnam coconuts are cheap, nutritious and very, very tasty.
If you go to Mekong Delta, you should try coconut that has pandan flavor.
Yes, yes, yes and yes. I’m addicted to coffee. 1-2 cups everyday for over 11 years. I bring Vietnamese coffee whenever I go abroad.
Coffee shop in Sai Gon is fantastic in styles.
#40. Bia hoi
Street beer in Ha Noi.
#48. Ca phe phin
It’s a must for me every morning with daddy.
#52. Banh mi
My breakfast, quite often.
#72. The tones
Dau sac, dau huyen, dau nang, dau hoi, dau nga, khong dau… Master the tones, and you’re speaking what some linguists call one of the most difficult languages in the world. Fail to get your tones right and you’ll get smiles, laughter and just won’t be understood. Vietnamese is a melody, a set of melodies, and the tones are the notes. Understand that and you’ll be singing in no time.
Haha yes, Vietnamese language is crazy! But no worries, many of my good friends who are Canadian, American, French can master it.
Last weekend I had 4 medium-size leftover loaves of bread and a lot of overripe bananas. After make some frozen banana ice cream (just banana covered by coconut milk, shredded coconut and chopped peanut – my most favourite childhood ice cream, Vietnamese style), I decided to make Vietnamese banana cake which is made from those 2 main ingredients.
Preparation time: 30 minutes
Baking time: 35 minutes
200 gr dried breads
600 ml coconut milk or half coconut milk and half whole milk
2 eggs, slightly beaten or 100 ml coconut milk instead – up to you
50 gr all purposed flour, optional – if you want it thicker
700 gr bananas, peeled and sliced
150-200 gr white sugar or brown sugar or half and half
1 tbsp Rhum wine
2 tsps lemon juice
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
Cut the breads into pieces, place in the oven at 210 degree F in 30 minutes or until they are completely dry (as below image)
Preheat the oven at 350 degree F.
In a medium bowl, mix together bread, coconut milk, whole milk, eggs, flour (if any), salt. Set aside. NOTE: It’s easier if you crush the breads into smaller pieces.
In a non stick loaf pan, mix together sliced bananas, sugar, Rhum wine, lemon juice until sugar covers bananas well.
Place bananas in the oven in 10 minutes. Sugar is almost dissolved then.
Remove the pan from the oven. Mix together the bread mixture and banana mixture. Add in vanilla extract and mix well.
Pour the batter into a 10-inch round/square pan.
Bake in 30-35 minutes or until the toothpick comes out clean.
Remove the pan from the oven and let the cake cool completely in the pan before slice it.
If you don’t use flour, the cake still has nice texture (as I did) and you don’t realize any bread crumb when you eat. It should be kept in the fridge up to a week (and it will get thicker then).
Enjoy dear! Don’t waste any leftover food in your kitchen!