Dim sums

Dim sums – exotic Saigon street foods

Dim sum is a style of Chinese cuisine prepared as small bite-sized portions of food served in small steamer baskets or on small plates. Chinese people brought dim sum to Saigon. The image of rolling carts serving dim sums which are moved through the streets and back alleys has been familiar to Saigon people.

Some of the popular dim sums on Saigon streets are Har gow (Fun guo, Há cảo in Vietnamese), Siu mai (Siew mai, Xíu mại in Vietnamese), Chive dumpling (Bánh hẹ in Vietnamese), Steamed jiao zi (Bánh xếp in Vietnamese), Steamed sticky rice with chicken in lotus leaf (Xôi lá sen in Vietnamese), Cha siu bao (BBQ pork bun, man tou, Bánh bao xá xíu), Custard bun (Bánh bao ca dé). Menu of Saigon dim sum stalls includes most of the above dishes. When coming to a dim sum stall, a customer usually orders all of the dishes on the menu because all of these dishes attract them with their nice looks and sweet smells.

In Chinese style, each type of dumplings (Har gow, Siu mai, Chive dumpling, Steamed jiao zi) is kept warm and served in a bamboo steamer. Saigon people serve and eat dumplings in a different way from the traditional way of Chinese people. In Saigon, all of the dumplings are usually kept warm together in a big steamer. When the dumplings are ordered, the seller put warm dumplings into a plate, top them with deep-fried shallots, then serve them to the customer. This serving and eating way reflects a unique part of Saigon street foods which are convenient and quick-service. Vietnamese mint (Rau răm), chili sauce, hoisin sauce, sautee and a dip from soybean sauce, vinegar are served to eat with the dumplings. Some vendors have created secret delicious dipping sauce recipe which attracts customer to their stalls. The tender, chewy crust and sweet-tasty filling of the dumplings, aromatic Vietnamese mint, crispy deep-fried shallots, hot chili sauce, sweet and salty hoisin sauce play well together.

Steamed sticky rice with chicken in lotus leaf, Cha siu bao, Custard bun are delicious dishes which could not be missed at dim sum stalls in Saigon.

In Saigon, all kinds of dim sums are usually kept warm together in a big steamer

In Saigon, they serve all kinds of dumplings on a plate, top them with deep-fried shallots, and eat with Vietnamese mint (Rau răm), chili sauce, hoisin sauce, sautee and a dip from soybean sauce, vinegar. This serving and eating way reflects a unique part of Saigon street foods which are convenient and quick-service.

Pork and shrimp inside a Har gow in Saigon

Tiny, white Har gows look nice and mouth-watering in Saigon

Siu mai and har gow in Saigon

Chive dumplings in Saigon

Steamed sticky rice with chicken in lotus leaf in Saigon

Cha siu bao and Custard bun in Saigon

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