My grandma lives in Luong Son, Vietnam, a small town in the Binh Thuan Province. When I visited in April 2019, she made sure I was fed 8 meals a day. Her motto in life is "if it's good then keep eating" and now I'm a little chubby but that's okay, the fat was made by love 🤣
Grilled pork with vermicelli noodles or in Vietnamese, bún thịt nướng. This dish is traditionally eaten with fish sauce, poured and mixed into the herbs and meat. It's a very sweet umami dish and can be eaten either hot or cold. I prefer it hot because the pork and spring roll pieces will ooze out their flavours into the noodles and sauce, blending to create this savoury bite. It's a very simple meal and whoever thought of this combination is a genius.
Beef noodle soup, or more famously known as phở, is one of the best pick-me-up and hangover soups ever. If you live under a rock, phở is made of flat rice flour noodles, beef (medium rare meat, brisket, tendons, meat ball), green onions, coriander and onions. The best phở is usually cooked over 6-8 hours, allowing the broth to soak up every last bit of beef flavour. In our opinion, it tastes better with hoisin sauce.
This round little thing is a spin of bánh bèo, a rice flour and tapioca flour cake. My grandma added eggs and chives to the filling, and the dipping sauce is a sweet and savoury fish sauce. It's a very yummy, mild and light snack.
This was Vietnamese thick noodle soup, or bánh canh with grilled fish. The noodles are made of rice and tapioca flour and the broth is a pork based stock. This particular dish had a lot of dimension with the coriander, green onions, salt, pepper and lemon juice. This bowl was 30 cents. You read that correctly. This bowl of delicious soup was less than a dollar. This merchant sells this one dish at her cart every single day, across the road from my grandma's place. And she's been selling it for years because it still tastes the exact same as I remembered from when I was 13 😋.
This was a rice flour cake, grilled and dipped in a chilli soy sauce. The charred flavouring added a nice texture to the otherwise plain flour. This is a common snack in the Binh Thuan province of Vietnam.
One of my favourite breakfasts, a simple egg and bread, or bánh mì ốp la. This dish is served everywhere in South Vietnam. It's simply a sunny side up egg, with soy sauce, and a bread roll. You break the yolk and let it mix with the sauce. It's delicious, salty, fun and reminds me of home every time.
I told my grandma I was craving durian, a commodity in Australia. She went out and got me 3 whole durians, got my uncle to chop them up and served them fresh after lunch, forcing me to go from full to obese. If you've had durian before, you will know a fresh one is the way to go. So creamy and delicious!
This was a delicious mì quảng style noodle dish, with pork, tomato, onions, turmeric, peanuts, vermicelli noodles and coriander. It was a very sweet and savoury tomato-based broth, completely different to other traditional noodle-soups. This style noodle also uses a unique type of noodle; a thinner pho noodle (the one in this photo was actually hủ, a clear noodles). This style of cooking originated from the Quảng Nam Province and I can only get the real thing when I go visit my grandma.
This was what a typical lunch or dinner looked like at my grandma's house. In this photo, we were having vịt quay (duck), tofu soup, pork clear soup and a mixed tofu vegetable dish.
This was an appreciation post for this little hard-working lady who is always laughing and feeding her grandchildren 💓