The fish or prawns are grilled over charcoal or more authentically, rice hay. Everything is rolled up in a lettuce leaf and enjoyed with fish sauce as a dip. The sweetness from the fresh fish or prawns combined with the slightly smokey flavor from grilling, are embraced by the many delicate flavors of the fresh herbs, the crunchiness from the cucumber and the bean sprouts. The fish sauce contributes saltiness and spiciness which ties everything together causes an explosion of flavors and textures in one’s mouth.
This dish is considered the trademark of southern Vietnamese cuisine. It has deep roots extend into the
Mekong delta regions where Cá Lóc (sometimes referred to in English as Snake/Mud Fish) and Tôm Càng (Freshwater Prawns) are plentiful. Simple local ingredients are combined with traditional cooking methods to give birth the perfect balance of flavor and texture. All you need are fresh herbs, bean sprouts, cucumber, bánh hỏi (or noodles) and fish sauce for dipping. As for the main course…fresh mud fish or prawns, and charcoal or rice hay.
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