Monday, January 18, 2010

Chuc Mung Nem Moi! :: Happy Lunar New Year!

The timing of our trip was pretty perfect. Tet, Vietnam's Lunar Year celebrations, kicks off in early February but preparations for Tet start weeks before. There are many special Tet treats such as Banh Trung - a grilled sticky rice cake filled with pork and sweet beans and wrapped in a banana leaf. Dip it in some sugar and you've got yourself a tasty little treat. Sounds kind of gnarly, I know, but it is really tasty. My parents make Banh Trung every year for Tet and it is a really special treat for us. In the picture above, this woman is selling Banh Trung that you can grill yourself at home. My mom showed me this special young rice called com. She said that we were really lucky to be able to try it because young rice is only available during certain times of the year; dependent on the harvest schedule. It is somewhat of a Vietnamese delicacy. Lucky me! The rice is very aromatic - it smells a little like sweet perfume and has a chewy texture that I really liked.

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