Wednesday, December 5, 2012

Hoi An - Cao Lau

My most memorable dish throughout my Vietnam trip, besides the bowl-licking bun mam whipped out by The Lunch Lady in Ho Chi Minh City, is the signature noodle dish of Hoi An, cao lau.

Thick, flavourful broth, served with slices of roasted porks and dough fritters, handful of fresh herbs and vegetable covering the top of the bowl, it is such a typical Vietnamese cuisine, yet so delicious and famous in this ancient town.

Outside of the central market

My first taste of this delight was on my first day in Hoi An. I was in the central market, looking for potential stall to have my first cao lau. You'll notice almost every stall in the market have it as their own signature dishes, making it very hard to choose which to patron. In the end, I left it to faith to help me decide.

The stall I ended up having my first cao lau

And faith treated me well. It was so good that I wished I have a second helping, if not for my bloated stomach.

A must-try in Hoi An

On my last day in the town, I have another bowl of cao lau, at one of the stalls by the river bank, overlooking the scenic river view. While not as tantalizing as the first bowl, it compensates with beautiful views by the river.

Cao lau = VND 25,000 (about RM 4.00)
Non halal


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You can read more about cao lau and how it is prepared here, an article by Robyn Eckhardt, author of the EatingAsia website.

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