Serving and Eating a Vietnamese Meal

Serving and Eating a Vietnamese Meal

Apart from rice, the soup is essentially a basic item when it comes to the Vietnamese cuisine. Occassionally, the meal can consists of only a soup - however, not any soup but one with many substantial ingredients. Just like their Burmese counterpart which has their national "moh hin gha", a soup dish, the Vietnamese will not hesitate to stop any any time just to partake a bowl of pho, which is pronounced 'far', a truly delicate soup made from beef that many Westerners will truly enjoy eating. The lengthy simmering provides a strong, nourishing stock and is served together with prepared noodles and raw veggies, and your option of uncooked or slightly cooked pieces of beef. Thousands of Vietnamese take pleasure in it daily. Certainly , there are vendors of pho on streets and in small food outlets, but especially in the market area.

Rice is prepared by the absorption process, without having salt. It is meant to be firm and separate, the grains getting just sufficient stickiness so they may be picked up simply using chopsticks. Pot-roasted rice, a basic version, has a flavor just about all its own and is regarded as a delicacy. It is quick to prepare and this way of cooking rice results in a drier and fluffier consistency. Rice of a fluffy consistency is regarded as suitable in Vietnamese cooking.

Chicken, fish, poultry and beef are all cooked in Vietnam, but mutton is never used. Beef too is something of a luxury, for livestock are usually working animals. Pork is the most common meat. Chickens and ducks are reared and deemed good investments simply because they produce eggs and supply meat. Fish and shellfish are common and inexpensive, for they are found in good abundance, and even in the flooded rice paddy fields. They are cooked in many ways, but the most significant use for them is in the making of nuoc mam or fish sauce, for which a small fish called 'rice fish' is used. These fishes are so small until they are likened to grains of rice.

Eating salads are usually common in Vietnam. Simple combinations such as cooked chicken and shredded cabbage are given an exotic touch with the inclusion of sliced mint and fresh cilantro leaves and the inescapable nuoc mam sauce (nuoc cham), used as a salad dressing.

Vietnamese food consists of a lot of fresh, uncooked veggies and fruit, and food is prepared in water rather than oil - 2 good reasons why a Vietnamese meal does not bring on a sense of surfeit. Bowls and chopsticks are used to set the table and all the food is offered at the same time.

Desserts are not really served at the end of a Vietnamese meal, however sweets and cakes are served as between meal snacks, and presented to guests. Vietnamese people are good at preserving fruits and making delightfully crisp preserve of winter melon, a recipe that requires 3 days to prepare.

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