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BINH DINH SPECIALITIES

Faraway tourists visiting Binh Dinh are captivated not only by its scenic beauty, cultural relics or attractive Boi singing night but also by the special dishes with strange tastes featuring cultural characteristics of martial land such as Bau Da wine, fermented pork rolls of district market, patty wrapped in pinnate leaves, roasted fish with rice vermicelli, banh hoi long heo (thin rice flat noodle with pig's tripes), bun Song Than (dual - thread vermicelli), etc.

 

Quy Nhon roasted fish with rice vermicelli

Visitors to Quy Nhon cannot spare taking the bun cha ca (rice vermicelli taken with roasted fish). Bun cha ca Quy Nhon is very popular and has affirmed its brand like "bun bo Hue" (beef vermicelli of Hue). Not only people in Binh Dinh enjoy bun cha ca of its region, do many other people across the country prefer it to be their favourite food.

Bun cha ca Quy Nhon is famous not only for thick, smooth fish patties with same size pieces, so that upon eating, people can feel the flavor of sea fish sweet to the tongue, but also well-known because of ... vegetables.

Accompanying each bowl of noodles is always a big vegetables plate with various types of vegetables. And just vegetables alone place itself has much to say. The gourmets confirm that - vegetables to eat Bun cha ca Quy Nhon is first class not only because of various types, the vegetables plate has structure as a colorful glamorous food layout with the blue of cilantro, basil, the white of beans sprouts, the dark purple mixed with yellow of banana strands, the emerald green of morning glory, etc.

They are merged together in a harmonious and ecstatic perfect whole so that diners enjoying once must somehow find the opportunity to enjoy again.

 

Bun Song Than (Dual – Thread Vermicelli)

Being made of green bean powder, with very tasty flavor and nutritive value, bun Song Than (dual-thread vermicelli) is a specialty of An Thai (Nhon Phuc - An Nhon). The name of Song Than derives from its shape: the vermicelli is a double thread of cooked bean starch.

Legends has it that the Nguyen kings usually ordered the vermicelli makers from Binh Dinh to Hue capital to make the vermicelli but it was not successful just because of lacking the water from Kon River. Thus, it is named under the "river of gods" (song Than), slantly pronounced "song than", meaning "dual thread".

Bun Song Than is not only meticulous in preparation, but also in its exposure time. Bun Song Than must be exposed on the sand under the light sunlights and winds along the Kon river. Perfect weather for Bun Song Than is from March to June. It seems like only sunlights and winds of Kon River can make Bun Song Than so uplifting.

 

Black Eel in Chau Truc Lagoon

Eels are available in many places like estuaries, brackish lagoons, and shrimp ponds along the central coast and in Binh Dinh.

Eels belong to eel and loach family, but in much larger size with some eels weigh several kilograms. Especially, black eels which are only found in Tra O lagoon, also be called Chau Truc lagoon because of its black skin like ebony, famous for being scented and delicious with highly nutritious value. There are many ways of preparing eels, among which the most popular ones are ro-ti, cooking in curry & simmering with herbals, etc.

Eels cooked with bamboo shoots or giang leaves are dishes to neutralize alcohol. When cooking, just use little water and simmer for sweetness to secrete from eel bone. Just putting tablespoons into the tongue, visitors could fell the delicious, sweet taste of well-known black eels.

 

Sugar cane bird 
Coming to Binh Dinh, tourists will have a chance to try the peculiar sugar cane bird which can only be found in the Tay Son region, which growth a lot of sugar cane. The bird is fresh, tasty no matter what method you choose to cook it.

The bird is small like sparrows but has longer legs and peak. After remove the feathers using hands and fire, the fat bird is revealed. After gutting, it is the time to spice it. The best are roasted and grilled. In order to grill it, have to cut it open, put in some spices, stick two bamboo sticks into the meat and grill it on the fire. To roasted, drop the bird into the frying peanut pan for ten minutes to have the meat turns to yellow and crunchy. Dipping the meat into the pepper-n-salt lemon mix, drinking some Binh Dinh wine are sensational experiences.


Girdle cakes made with coconut juice

Binh Dinh is considered to be the homeland of girdle cake. Legends say that girdle cake was strategic dried foods which were born with the speedy steps of Tay Son army to fight the invading armies. 

 

Perhaps only Banh trang nuoc dua (girdle cakes made with coconut juice) presents most nuances of Binh Dinh - very frugal, delicious and hospitable. Banh trang nuoc dua has its surface as large as a brass tray, bulged above are coconut pulp and sesame seeds.

The major material for making banh trang nuoc dua is grated cassava, thoroughly filtered with water and spices. Coconut pulp was crushed to take the mash liquor from previous afternoon, flour and spices being ready prepared.

This is a delicious and simple food, just need being grilled over coals. When encoutering fire, the cake will be ballooned up, coconut juice keeps pouring out like fat layer with greasy flavor, and alluring aroma found even not eat yet.

Feeling crispy upon chewing, tallowy flavour of coconut blended with tallowy flavour of sesame, onions, sweet taste of flour blended with the spicy flavor of pepper create a rustic, strong, extremely attractive flavor.


Tiny rice noodle sheets served with boiled pig’s internal organs

Banh hoi (tiny rice noodle sheets) is a Binh Dinh speciality prepared from rice. Ways of preparing this cake are as follows: gao tam thom (fragrant rice) is washed thoroughly, soaked in water overnight, then taken out to be dry, and finely ground by a stone mortar - water powder, then put in dry cloth bags, and put until drain.

The powder is steamed to be sufficiently cooked, stuffed, divided into about half a kilo blocks called "giao" and put into cake molds. The cake is steamed until being cooked sufficiently.

Banh hoi is served with pig interal organs and a hot porridge bowl. The porridge is quite diluted, simmered with blood and minced lean meat. Next to hot bowl of porridge is a plate of pig interal organs with brown heart and sausage pieces, circled beside soft heart pieces, tough and crunchy neck pieces in thin and oval shape. These pieces serving with banh hoi make it become more lucrative with extraordinary sweet flavor.


Jumping shrimp pancakes

Binh Dinh pancake, also called jumping shrimp pancake is different from small- size Hue pancake or too large-size Nam Bo (The South) pancake. Binh Dinh pancake is medium-sized wrapped inside the essence of heaven and earth.

Binh Dinh pancake is delicious because its components are made from local specialties. For example, the rice must be milled from rice types in Eastern paddies. When processing the pancakes, especially the shrimps must be tiger shrimps which are still alive and jumping. This shrimp species live in brackish water in Thi Nai lagoon. Sauce must be prepared from natural dualistic fish sauce made by the people in coastal area.

Pancake is served with pure rice paper, raw vegetables, a little thinly sliced mango and cucumber, and a cup of yellow fish sauce with coastal sweet flavor. The sweetness of fresh shrimp, the crunchy flavor rice being well cooked and a little sour and acerbity of mango and banana, all are blended into a very attractive dish.


Patty wrapped in pinnate leaves

"Should any one want to eat patty wrapped in pinnate leaves

Get married with a man in Binh Dinh to enjoy the best flavor".

Coming to Binh Dinh, tourist will enjoy the sweet flavor of banh it la gai, a rustic, familiar and very Binh Dinh cake - unique from preparing way to flavor. The cake is cone  shaped with square bottom, notch edges pointed up to the top. 


To Binh Dinh people, death anniversary can be lack of fishes and meats, however banh it la gai is indispensable. In wedding custom, the tray of banh it la gai also shows the proficiency and ingenuity of the women.

The cake is made with fresh sticky rice powder kneading finely with pinnate leaves and granulated sugar. The patching is made with coconut put or green beans. Banh it la gai is very soft but not sticky. Eating a piece the sweetness of sugar, the flavor of sticky rice, fatty taste of oil, freshy flavor of beans, spicy aroma of ginger create a of quiche an very private sense.


Fermented Pork Rolls of District Market

"If you happen to come to Vinh Thanh, my native place

You’ll enjoy tasting the “nem Cho Huyen” and watch drama night."

The Vinh Thanh village, Phuoc Loc Commune, Tuy Phuoc District (formerly was the district town) is famous for not only the classical drama of Dao Tan, but also for the "nem cho Huyen" (fermented pork rolls of the district market). It can be said that nem cho Huyen is the quintessence and favourite foods of the local people here. Nem cho huyen is delicious not only because of its processing way but also of the pork. The pork is carefully chosen and must be the lean meat of a local pig.

Biting a piece of the bologna, you can feel its toughness, sour and sweet combine at the same time. The bologna is perfect if it is grilled on the fire, eaten along with some coriander, shiso, cilantro, banana, star fruit, cucumber, soy sauce garlic, and chilies. The bologna can also be eaten with rice paper and coriander. The locals call it “the rolls cake.” Dipping the rolls in to a bowl of sauce, tasting it, and you will want more.

Nem cho Huyen is not as soft as nem Thu Duc, not as sweet as nem Lai Vung or nem An Cuu but rather tough, crispy, sour, crunchy, sweet which taste very delicious.

Fresh spring rolls are itselves tasty; or it can be grilled with charcoal, and served with rice paper, cha ram, cilantro, shiso, laksa leaves, banana, chopped star fruit, and cucumber and with sauce (or soy sauce depending on taste). However, the most popular sauce is still fish sauce diluted with crushed peanuts, adding sugar, garlic, and chili which makes the sauce sweet and imbued.

 

Sea urchin sauce in My An

Sea urchin can be found in many regions in Vietnam, however the excellent sea urchin sauce used for offering the Kings previously seems to be available in Phu My - Binh Dinh only.  


Sea urchin is a kind of mollusc animals, a relative of clams and oysters; living in the coastal reefs with warm water, and in moss. There are many types of urchin, and the one used to make sauce is local black urchin. Cutting preliminarily the thorns bristling around the urchin, then gouging a hole right on its mouth, the meat of urchin are exposed in front of your eyes.

To make sauce, people put meat of urchin on a clay jar, sprinkle a few grains of salt on top, and bring to bury in the kitchen or "giang-dry" under the sun from 10 to 15 days. Ripe urchin sauce shall be finely soluble, viscous, opaque red, with vivid aroma. Spices only include garlic and whole grain pepper. Salty, sour, and sweet flavor create a special taste of the urchin meat creating a kind of seductive sauces.

Urchin sauce is delicious in every ways of eating. However, people in coastal area most prefer using the sauce with fresh noodles or with raw vegetables, bellies and spring rolls to dip into. Its delicious flavor cannot be described in words! This scrumptious sauce can satisfy even the most demanding customers in the gourmets circle.


Nien fish in An Lao

An Lao is the living place of liberal nien fish, which is hailed as the “king of fish” or “giant fish”. Nien fish resides only in clean and pure moving water; with its unique food is rock moss at the foot of the waterfall.

It is the fish species of the jungle, both mighty and gracious, with beautiful white body in not very big size. The big one is little bigger than 2 fingers but very healthy, swimming all day on the stream plunging backwards as want to challenge along with speed of flow. The fish does not need to be proccessed with any recipe; it just needs being roasted for a while until its scented smell spreading out, then it's done.

Upon eating, dipping the fish in salt ground with green chili, a few drops of lemon juice, a few slices of tomato clamping with basil. There is no word to describe the delicious and strong flavor with slightly herbal smell. The intestine of nien is the most precious part that every gourmet likes to taste with the bitterness of the bile, slighly flavor of moss, and water in river-mountain scene. The unforgetable flavor of nien fist makes people always crave to eat, even just after having opportunity to enjoy.

 

Seafood Specialities 


134km of coastline and large inland and territorial waters not only creates for Binh Dinh the long seashores stretching with white sand, and beautiful, unspoiled, and heart-rending island, but also brings Binh Dinh a great variety of seafood resources in a large volume and high economic value such as lobster, tiger prawns, king crab, squid, tomatoes, ocean tuna, etc. processed into attractive dishes with high nutritional value suitable for everyone’s taste.


Bau Da wine 
Bàu Đá wine is a special product, and also the pride of the people of Binh Dinh. This is a very strong wine, more than 50 degrees, and you can be drunk very fast with this alcohol.

The wine is made solely based on a secret family formula. The water that is used to make the wine is from the creek of Bau Da village, An Nhon district. The wine doesn’t leave any side effect when drink like headache afterward. The wine is brewed using sticky rice, which makes the wine clearer, stronger, warmer, sweeter.