Bột Chiên Trứng Fried Dough and Eggs – 206 of 365

Dinner Cooking

Alleyways in Vietnam are a fascinating portal into a whole different world.  The chaotic maelstrom of the streets fades into a more benign buzz as the full on noise assault gradually fades into the background.  The city chaos eventually is shut out as the labyrinth of narrow passageways closes in on anyone who ventures in.

Not too far down a District 1 side alley at 179 Ly Tu Trung is a collection of street food stands pushed up against a buildings concrete wall.   The space is just wide enough for a motorbike to squeeze on by a strip of squat stools and tables.

Bột Chiên Trứng

If I didn’t know these had origins in rice, I’d have thought they were the “home fries” so commonly served with American breakfasts.   Actually with the sunny side up egg, this meal would be at home in any diner tastewise, minus the soy sauce of course.

Now this being Vietnam, the concept of personal space just does not exist so my friend and I just dropped it down next to two hotel workers.   Much to our surprise they struck up a conversation and were thrilled two westerners would even consider a dollar meal served at a table all lopsided because half was resting in a giant water logged pothole.   They seemed amazed that a non Vietnamese could successfully live over here for two years and live to tell about it.   Yes, sometimes I am amazed, too but that’s a story for another day.

As we grazed this dollar dinner consisting of thick stacks of rice dough cut into squares and deep fried into a golden brown chunk, we talked about how street food really is such an important part of Saigon’s dining sphere.  Our new friends lamented unfortunately most westerners crashing at their hotel stick to the “safe” choices littering this tourist oriented area.

Sticking to what we know is human nature of course but I wish all these tourists could see what lies just beyond the known in the alleyway beyond.

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Categories: Vietnamese Food

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