It is believed that banh mi plays an important role among the street foods, especially in Saigon. Many kinds of banh mi ingredients concluding grilled balls, Vietnamese “pha lau”, chicken meat, pork dumplings, canned fish, egg, etc.
The attractiveness of Saigon banh mi:
Some recent years, Vietnamese banh mi or Saigon banh mi is the familiar name in the list of the best street foods around the world rated by many renowned magazines such as Lonely Planet, CNN, Telegraph, National Geographic and BBC. In fact, it is tasty thanks to a variety of non-stopping creativeness in different places.
1. Pork ham banh mi (bánh mì chả)
Apart from paté, cool meat, etc, Vietnamese pork ham with fragrant and crispy taste creates the distinct banh mi dish, leading the visitors can feel full enough flavors of ham wrapped in banana leaf with a little black pepper salt. Due to being available in any bread stall, you can try ham there. One example of luxurious ham stall named “Gio cha Minh Chau” located on Ly Tu Trong, District 1, HCMC, or “banh mi Nhu Lan”, Hanoi.
Besides, beef ham (chả bò), special food of Da Nang, gradually becomes amazing with fragrant, slightly tough, crunchy beef for Saigon people. Beside dill, many places also add fried spring onion (hanh phi), paté, cheese into beef ham banh mi, bringing the fantastic variation. To try the dish, you can visit some stalls of “banh mi cha bo” on Nguyen Thuong Hien Street, in Da Nang or Alley 85, Ba Huyen Thanh Quan Street.
Omelette fried on small pan remaining its edge, half-cooked and half-raw egg yolk, served with pickled cucumber, soy sauce and chili sauce, is one of favorite foods in Saigon. In addition, many people love a plate of combo ingredients concluding barbecued pork (xa xiu), meatballs/pork dumplings (xiu mai) and pate.
Thanks to the simple recipe, leading omelette bread appeared in almost banh mi stalls. On suggested destination for you is “banh mi Hoa Ma” on Cao Thang Street, one ideal place to try Vietnamese omelette banh mi.
3. Cha ca (fried grounded fish balls)
Saigon is believed containing all best Vietnamese foods. Obviously, fried grounded fish ball, the special seafood are brought and becomes one of the banh mi ingredients preferred by Saigon people.
Loaf of crispy bread with fragrant fish balls, adding a few corianders, chili sauce to make great flavor that attracts even demanding visitors. Apart from the vehicles carrying banh mi on the sidewalk, restaurant “banh mi cha ca Vung Tau” on Bui Thi Xuan as well as “banh mi cha ca” on Pasteur corner, Dien Bien Phu Street are the familiar destinations you need to know to try this tasty dish.
4. Banh mi ga xe (shredded chicken bread)
Not only fish or pork meat, but chicken also becomes the unique ingredient for Vietnamese banh mi. Just shred chicken meat into short thin strips, season until fitting taste, fry on the heating pan, paired with coriander, spring onion, cucumber to create a very yummy bread.
To try this food, we recommend you come to a stall of banh mi ga xe on Hoang Van Thu Street, Phu Nhuan District; crossroad of Thong Nhat Street – Vo Hoang Ngan Str, Thu Duc District; or along Tran Quoc Toan Str., District 3.
5. Xiu mai – Vietnamese pork dumplings
This is a quite popular dish, but just some places have the delicious xiu mai. A tasty pork dumpling must be fragrant, fat, chewy and tough, made from half lean and half fat minced meat. Banh mi must be warm, crunchy that we can feel whenever touching our top tough.
To try the food, runcooking.com suggests you should visit the bread stall on Nguyen Kiem Street (at the roundabout Nguyen Kiem, Nguyen Thai Son), available from afternoon until night. Apart from pork dumpling meatballs, Saigon is also renowned with fried pork dumplings served with soy sauce and red wine vinegar following Chinese style (the fried pork dumplings on Nguyen Thi Minh Khai, District 3). Besides, pork dumpling soup served with the dipping sauce following Da Lat style (on Ally 189 Cong Quynh, District 1).
Not only Vietnamese people, but the foreigners also admit that Vietnamese sandwich with grilled pork contains a certainly amazing flavor. In fact, it is tasty thanks to the balance between the taste, fragrance of grilled meatballs, the gentle sweetie of authentic soy sauce, pickles, cucumber, coriander as well as a little spicy sate.
It is undeniable that banh mi is available across Vietnam with the good taste and low-price. For example, at 37 Nguyen Trai, District 1, HCMC or 60 Truong Quoc Trung, Phu Nhuan District listed the top destinations that Saigon people often visit.
7. Paté, cool meat
It is believed that Vietnamese sandwich with paté, cool meat is one of the most authentic foods. Actually, 8 out of 10 bread stalls are available with combo ingredients concluding butter, pate, cool meat, shredded ham, vegetables.
If you visit Saigon, do not miss out “banh mi o moi” on Le Thi Rieng, Dist.1, HCMC from afternoon till late night, or Sau Minh stall on Vo Van Tan, Lan Hue on Cach Mang Thang 8.
8. Pha Lau
Pha Lau is the favorite food for Saigon people, gradually becomes the ingredient inside bread. Two methods to enjoy it are pha lau with dipping sauce and fried pha lau placing inside banh mi. Many addresses of pha lau with dipping sauce located in Saigon, for example, at District 4, Ton Dan Street. Banh mi can be paired with many types of certain pha lau such as liver, tongue, head, quail egg, duck stomach, etc. One more ideal address is at 823 Nguyen Trai, District 5 for those who want to enjoy crunchy and tasty pha lau.
9. Roasted pork
One more distinct Vietnamese banh mi is the fragrant roasted pork served with cucumber, pickles, coriander, chili and tasty soup.
Besides, roasted pork can be available in some stalls of specialized roasted pork, and roasted duck. Lien Thai banh mi on Tran Dinh Xu, or No Trang Long, Binh Thanh District.
10. Shredded pork skin (Bì)
Shredded pork skin is not only the great food served with broken rice (com tam), but also combines perfectly with banh mi. It is noteworthy that to increase the attractiveness, the chef must spend so much effort in terms of making soup, dipping sauce as well as cucumber and pickles to make the dish more scrumptious. One renowned place for those loving this type of Vietnamese sandwich located at 150 Nguyen Trai, District 1, opens from morning until noon.
Apart from 10 best Vietnamese banh mi above, the others such as canned fish, stewed beef, ham, etc are also the great ones. In addition, the international bread named Turky, French stick-bread, non-ingredient Paparoti.
In short, Vietnamese sandwich is the combination between culture and cuisine, brought to Vietnam since 1887 with butter and paté inside one loaf of baguette. Up to 1954, many different flavors have been created from roasted meat, egg, pork pie, served with lettuce, pickles and tasty sauce like the present banh mi.