Broken Rice (Com Tam) – a must eat Vietnamese food
Broken Rice – Com Tam is one of the most favorite dishes in South Vietnam, especially Ho Chi Minh City. It’s easy to see a Com Tam stall with an attractive smell on the streets in the morning or at night.
The main ingredient for Com Tam is broken rice, which is steamed before being served. This kind of steamed rice is smaller than normal steamed rice so that it’s comfortable to eat. The most popular toppings of Broken Rice dishes include grilled pork chop, Vietnamese pork and egg pie, thinly shredded pork skin mixed with toasted rice powder and fried egg. Some people don’t want to eat all of them with their Com Tam dish but only one or two main toppings. The toppings include a mix of chopped green onion and oil making Com Tam have a special smell, sliced cucumber, pickled carrot and white radish making it easier to eat. A small bowl of soup with white radish, carrot and chopped green onion and sweet and sour fish sauce dip are also served with a plate of steamed broken rice and toppings. When you enjoy a Com Tam dish, you will feel something very Vietnamese. It’s really a perfect mix to make an amazing food that wins not only locals but visitors’ heart.
Grilled pork chop is popular around the world and it tastes different in different countries. We marinate the pork chop with soy sauce, honey, oyster oil, chicken oil, sesame oil, fish sauce, small onion, garlic, black pepper, lemongrass, butter, coconut cream, and orange juice. The marinated pork chop is grilled on charcoal and the cook must stand and take care of the chop until it’s ready.
Vietnamese pork and egg pie to eat with is a secret receipt of Vietnamese people. This pork pie is made from pork, wood ear mushroom, jicama, and egg. Pork is ground, mushroom and jicama are shredded before being mixed with egg. Then the mix is steamed until it’s well-done, egg yolk is poured into the mold to make the orange layer on the pie. The cook will cut the pie into small pieces to serve with Broken Rice.
Finally, the fish sauce dip is a mix of lemon juice, coconut water, sugar and ground chili, and garlic. The dipping fish sauce is a must to eat with Com Tam. The diner uses the spoon to get a little dip and put onto the steamed broken rice before eating. A fork is used to eat the grilled pork chop as well as pork and egg pie.
A plate of Com Tam with delicious toppings (omelet, meat and egg pie, shredded pigskin, pickles, and cucumber slices). Fish sauce dip is a must to eat with Broken Rice – Photo by Scooter Saigon Tour
Broken Rice with grilled pork chop – Photo by Scooter Saigon Tour
Broken Rice With shrimp, shredded pigskin, omelet and herbs – Photo by Scooter Saigon Tour
Saigon people also love eating Broken rice with stuffed bitter melon soup – Photo by Scooter Saigon Tour
Pork and egg pie are served with Broken Rice – Photo by Scooter Saigon Tour
Places to enjoy the best broken rice (Com Tam) in Saigon:
- Com Tam Thu Thao, 459 – 461, Le Dai Hanh Street, District 11, Ho Chi Minh City; Opening hours: 9:00 – 19:00; Prices: from 40,000 VND.
- Com Tam Thuan Kieu, 26 Ton That Tung Street, Ben Thanh Ward, District 1, Ho Chi Minh City; Opening hours: 10:00 – 20:45; Prices: 25,000 – 275,000 VND; Website: http://comtamthuankieu.com.vn
- Com Tam Tu Map, 812 Su Van Hanh Street, Ward 12, District 8, Ho Chi Minh City; Opening hours: 7:00 – 14:00; 17:00 – 21:00; Prices: 15, 000 – 60,000 VND.
- Com Tam Ba Ghien, 291 Nguyen Tri Phuong Street, Ward 5, District 10, Ho Chi Minh City; Opening hours: 7:00 – 21:00; Prices: 35,000 – 85,000 VND.
- Com Tam Nguyen Van Cu, 167 Nguyen Tri Phuong Street, Ward 2, District 5, Ho Chi Minh City; Opening hours: 6:30 – 15:00; Prices: 50,000 – 130,000 VND.
- Com Tam Kieu Giang, 192E Tran Quang Khai Street, Tan Dinh Ward, District 1, Ho Chi Minh City; Opening hours: 7:00 – 22:00; Prices: 40,000 – 70,000 VND.
- Com Tam Cali, 32 Nguyen Trai Street, Pham Ngu Lao Ward, District 1, Ho Chi Minh City; Website: https://www.comtamcali.com.
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