Archive | March, 2012

Bò Kho Beef Stew – 106 of 365

Almost American style pot roast in Vietnam?  You bet.   Carrots softened from hours of simmering, beef about as “tender” as one can find in Vietnam, and a rich sauce all filled both a small bowl and my belly up.   The crispy baguette was a thoughtful addition to mop up the remainders of the rich broth a […]

Phu Quoc Night Market Dinner – 105 of 365

Nine hours on a motorbike exploring this island’s rutted red dirt roads well off the tourist trail yielded a few nice surprises such as a great shrimp and pork lunch, women laying out fish to dry and even a few fish sauce factories stinking the humid air up to high heaven.   But who would have known […]

Phu Quoc Lunch – 104 of 365

Renting a motorbike and cruising the dirt backroads of Phu Quoc has opened my eyes to how the other half lives and gave me some serious hunger as well.  After making a large sunburned loop around the northern half of the island the main “highway” sucked me right back into centrally located Duong Dong Town, a sweltering heat […]

Going Beyond the Guidebooks

My long walks through both Saigon and Hanoi inspired my latest article for the Tuoi Tre newspaper.  Getting out on foot is a great way to take in experiences we might otherwise miss.   Here is the link and should it not work, the text follows. Whether we call this colorful enigma Saigon or Ho […]

Phu Quoc Phổ Breakfast – 103 of 365

You just know a great trip is in store when the only English the hotel bellhop seems to know is, “How many girl you want for breakfast?  One?  Two?  Three?”  Someone obviously has taught him this phrase for a reason, and he wouldn’t even know how to count to three unless some past situation had risen to the occasion of […]

Hột Vịt Lộn Fertile Duck Egg – 102 of 365

I am still mentally digesting last week’s grilled cricket dinner.  That maiden voyage into Vietnam’s food underbelly at first violated my western sensibilities but ended quite alright actually.   But still…eating those very same crunchy bugs we normally swat, spray, step on or poison into oblivion is an unnerving proposition for sure.  While pushing away from the insect table, my friends and […]

Brittle Shrimp – 101 of 365

Food really is a wonderful medium bringing random people together.  For months and months one of the van drivers at my airline has shuttled me back and forth from the Hanoi airport.  Pleasantries are exchanged and I then doze off into my Ipod enhanced world for the 45 minute ride without much further contact with Xa since our respective levels […]

Phở Xào Fried Noodles – 100 of 365

We have reached a milestone with meal number 100!  Most have been winners so far and this begs the question…Will 365 meals be enough to sample everything Vietnam grills, stir fries, dunks in oil, steams or otherwise dishes up?  This food journey still remains in its infancy though with so many new foods just awaiting their […]

Teppanyaki Delights – 99 of 365

Living in Vietnam exposes how much in the west we take for granted, even things as simple as food.   We have so many items we don’t even give a second thought until easy access is no longer an option.   Welcome to the expat experience in Vietnam where substitutions and occasional hoarding are a way of […]

Red Hot Flaming Pot – 98 of 365

Let’s picture this particular lunch in an American mall food court near you.   How many things can you see going wrong with this scene…a fiery paraffin ball, a red hot aluminum cooking vessel, oily boiling liquid, and raw chicken and seafood.   One bump of the table and this flaming salmonella party isn’t going to end so pretty. No, […]