Vietnamese Pancake is a half-round shaped crepe made from rice flour mixed with turmeric powder, chopped green onion… Most of tourists know about crispy crepe of Banh Xeo but many Vietnamese people like eating Banh Xeo with tough crepe. The fillings are usually made from shrimp, bean sprouts and pork belly.
Vietnamese Pancake is a special cake which must be tasted by 5 senses. The eyes are used to see how it’s made and its beautiful yellow color when it’s ready. The cook must be patient because he has to sit or stand to make one by one Vietnamese Pancake by a big pan on fire. Firstly he spreads oil over the pan before pouring the battle into the pan. Then he covers the lid and wait for a “sizz” sound which tell him that it’s ready to be got out. Now you use your ears to listen to the attractive sound “sizz”. Don’t forget to smell when the cook open the lid. The crepe is served on a plate with assorted herbs, pickled carrot and dipping fish sauce. The dinner will use his fingers to wrap a piece of Banh Xeo and fillings in rice paper or bean leaf with other herbs. It’s time to dip the roll in the fish sauce dip and tuck in. You will use your tongue to feel the amazing taste of this food.
Vietnamese people usually gather to make Banh Xeo on weekends or in holidays. Adults make the battle while children can help to wash vegetables and bring ready Vietnamese Pancake onto dinning table. It takes a few hours to cook Banh Xeo so that we have chance to talk to each other about everything all over the world. The food contains the soul of each Vietnamese and symbolize the love. There’s no better choice to eat Banh Xeo when it’s raining or it’s cold.
Although Vietnamese Pancake originated in South Vietnam, this flavorful pancake has won the hearts of all Vietnamese people. The receipt has been changed to meet local taste is the reason we have many kinds of Vietnamese Pancake.
1. Southern Style Vietnamese Pancakes
Vietnamese Pancake in Mekong Delta, South Vietnam is fried in a big pan so that the crepe’s diameter is about 40 centimeters. Coconut milk is used to make the crepe greasier. The crepe is crispy outside and tough inside. Mekong Delta is full of fresh veggies, including smelling herbs which are eaten with Banh Xeo. The fillings are usually made from shrimp, mushroom, bean sprouts, green bean paste and pork belly.
What a such mouth-watering South Style Vietnamese Pancake! The yellow crepe is served with fish sauce dip, assorted herbs, pickled carrot and white radish – Photo by Scooter Saigon Tour
2. Central Style Vietnamese Pancake
Central Style Vietnamese Pancake is as big as human hand and very crispy. To make it, the cook use a special small pan that you can see in the photo. The fillings is simple with shrimp, mushroom, bean sprouts and pork belly. Besides assorted herbs, this kind of Vietnamese Pancake is eaten with sliced star fruit.
In Central Vietnam, people fry Banh Xeo in small pan to make this crepe – Photo by Scooter Saigon Tour
This crispy Central Style Banh Xeo is as small as your hand – Photo by Scooter Saigon Tour
Central Banh Xeo is better to eat with rice paper – Photo by Scooter Saigon Tour
3. Hue Style Vietnamese Pancake
Vietnamese Pancake in Hue is called Banh Khoai – one of the most popular specialty foods of this region. Banh Khoai is small and crispy. It’s similar to Central Style Vietnamese Pancake and usually eaten with grilled pork and glutinous soup made from liver, peanut, pork and other secret ingredients.
Banh Khoai is eaten with a special sauce with secret receipt – Photo by Scooter Saigon Tour
4. Northern Style Vietnamese Pancake
Besides usual ingredients to make fillings of Vietnamese Pancake, Northern people use shredded jacama or taro.
In recent days, the life in big city like Ho Chi Minh has become more and more modern. Many Vietnamese Pancake’s receipts appear to meet the day by day changed taste of locals. You can see a long menu of Banh Xeo at Banh Xeo restaurants or food stalls. I’d like to list some of them:
– Traditional Southern Banh Xeo with shrimp, pork, mushroom, green bean paste and green bean;
– Banh Xeo in Central Style;
– Banh Khoai (Hue Style);
– Banh Xeo with seafoods (shrimp, scallop, squids…)
– Vegetarian Banh Xeo with fried tofu, mushroom, green bean paste and green bean;
– Banh Xeo with coconut palm, shrimp, pork and green bean;
– Banh Xeo with lotus seeds and lotus root.
Where to eat best Banh Xeo in Vietnam?
There are hundreds of places for you to eat Banh Xeo in Vietnam. I’d like recommend most popular eating places which serve best Banh Xeo:
1. Ho Chi Minh city:
- Vietnamese Pancake Muoi Xiem at 225-227 Nguyen Trai street, District 1
- Vietnamese Pancake An La Ghien at 74 Suong Nguyet Anh street, District 1
- Vietnamese Pancake at 46A Đinh Cong Trang Street, District 1
- Ngoc Son restaurant at 103 Ngo Quyen Street, District 5
2. Hue city:
- Banh Khoai Lac Thien at 6 Dinh Tien Hoang Street, Hue city
- Banh Khoai Hanh at 11 Pho Duc Chinh Street, Hue city
- Banh Khoai Hong Mai at 78 Dinh Tien Hoang Street, Hue city
- Banh Xeo Doi Can – 166B Doi Can Street, Ba Dinh District
- Banh Xeo Hang Bo – 22 Hang Bo Street, Hoan Kiem District
- Banh Xeo Nguyen Cong Tru at Nguyen Cong Tru market, Hai Ba Trung District
- Banh Xeo Ta Quang Buu – 107 ES Ta Quang Buu Street, Hai Ba Trung District
Banh Xeo is a Vietnamese traditional cakes which has won the heart of all people in Vietnam and many foreign visitors. If you have chance to come to Ho Chi Minh city, please do not hesitate to enjoy a bite of this amazing food. If you don’t know where to eat Banh Xeo, Scooter Saigon Tour is happy to serve you this food and others. Click SAIGON FOOD TOUR BY MOTORBIKE for details.
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