Cho Moi is the most densely populated district in An Giang province. Cho Moi district is surrounded by 3 rivers: Tien river, Hau river and Vam Nao river. There are 2 islands in Cho Moi: Gieng island and Ong Chuong island. Glutinous rice in Cho Moi is one of the best of its kind. The glutinous rice seeds are round, shiny, sticky and fragrant. Glutinous rice is the main ingredient for various Vietnamese foods: tens of kinds of Steamed sticky rice, tens of kinds of sweet soups, the traditional Square sticky rice, etc. People in Cho Moi created an impressive recipe from glutinous rice – bloating steamed glutinous rice (Xoi phong).
Xoi phong is made from glutinous rice and mung bean. These two ingredients are soaked in water, steamed until well-done. Knead them into a smooth paste, add some oil to make the paste nonsticky, greasy, oily and shiny. Form the paste into a cylinder. When eating, cut the cylinder into circles, fry the circle in oil until they turn into a crispy, yellow sphere which is as big as a ball. The bloating glutinous rice is tender inside, crispy outside. The cook should be patient and skillful to press the circle, rotate the ball continuously to make sure it is well-done, nice looking and smelling. A big cast iron pan and a cast iron ladle are used to fry Xoi phong.
To serve, cut the ball into thin pieces and eat. Some prefer to dip Xoi phong in chili paste, soybean sauce. It is also served with roasted chicken or boiled chicken, herbs, pickled daikon and carrot. Coming to Cho Moi, do not miss tasting the amazing Xoi phong. It will win your heart at first bite.