Expanded glutinous rice sweet soup – a Vietnamese traditional food has attracted most of the people thanks to its simple recipe and great taste. The sweet soup is called Chè bà cốt or Che ba cot in Vietnamese. Sold at street food stalls, it is an essence of Hanoi capital. The sweet soup with sticky glutinous rice, hot and smelling ginger can warm your stomach and satisfy your taste on cold days in Hanoi. The sweet soup is not only delicious but also healthy. It can help to treat a cough, protect from the cold and flu.
Expanded glutinous rice sweet soup is simply made from 3 cheap and familiar ingredients: glutinous rice, brown sugar, and ginger. However, the cook should be experienced and skillful enough to cook a delicious food from these ingredients. Choose high-quality Golden-flower glutinous rice (Nếp cái hoa vàng) which is shining and in white color. Cook the glutinous rice in water until tender but not broken, add syrup from brown sugar and mashed ginger. The expanded glutinous rice sweet soup should have sticky, the tender but not broken rice, not too thick not too runny, sweet enough broth, and the light smell of ginger.
The sweet soup is served hot in a porcelain bowl. Expanded glutinous rice sweet soup which is in brown color looks nice and attractive. Its sweet fragrance can win the heart of anyone. Use a spoon to eat the sweet soup, you can feel the sticky rice, the ginger and the sweet broth blend in your mouth. Some people prefer to eat Expanded glutinous rice sweet soup with Mung bean coated glutinous rice (Xôi vò, Xoi vo) which is soft, buttery, drier in comparison to other kinds of Steamed glutinous rice in Vietnam. Just add some Xoi vo into the sweet soup and eat. The sweet soup and the Mung bean coated glutinous rice go well together. Hanoi people love eating warm Che ba cot at street food stalls while looking over other people on the streets on autumn days. That is the way they enjoy beautiful cool days in the autumn. If you have a chance to visit Hanoi, do not miss tasting this sweet soup and learn more about the local life, the rich cuisine of the capital, its unique culture.