All you need to know about Hu Tieu, Vietnamese noodle soup
Have you ever heard of one of Vietnam’s signature dishes, a pork noodle soup called Hu Tieu? In the crazy maze of Vietnamese cuisine, Hu Tieu is one option you should choose to try at least once. The origins of Hu Tieu can be traced back to the Chinese and the Cambodians who created and later made this dish popular in Saigon. It has now become a signature dish of the South and you can run into a Hu Tieu vendor in practically every nook and cranny.
While there are a dozen variations of hu tieu, the broth is pretty much the same in every version. This is thanks to a mixture of bones, dried squid, rock sugar along with pork and vegetables which are left to simmer for hours.
Hu Tieu Nam Vang – Nam Vang Rice Noodles
Among all types of hu tieu, hu tieu Nam Vang is probably one of the most famous. This is a multiethnic dish that was invented by the Cambodians, processed by the Chinese and enjoyed by the Vietnamese. The composition is quite simple: noodles, shrimp, lean meat, pig hearts, mince, quail eggs, and broth. Today, hu tieu nam vang is made with different ingredients, in addition to pork and shrimp, one can enjoy hu tieu nam vang with crab and squid. One element – minced meat – stays the same though, because this is the soul of the whole dish.
Hu Tieu Bo Vien – Rice Noodles with Meatballs
Hu tieu bo vien has only one single ingredient – the chewy meatballs. Another signature of the dish is the small noodles that are opaque white. Despite its simple ingredients with nothing special, a hot bowl of hu tieu bo vien with chewy yet tender noodles and the delicious meatballs never fails to make my mouth water.
Hu Tieu My Tho
Hu tieu My Tho bowl is like a painting full of attractive colors with red shrimp, green celery, chrysanthemum, and red peppers. A very important spice creating the unique aroma of the dish is the minced garlic. But if you want to taste the authentic flavor of hu tieu My Tho, Tien Giang province is where you should go as hu tieu My Tho in Saigon has been adapted to the Saigonese’ appetite.
Hu Tieu Sa Te – Rice Noodles with Dried Chilly Soup
As a specialty of the Chinese, inherited from the Chinese community, hu tieu sa te is rarely seen on the streets of Saigon. The eateries serving hu tieu sa te are mainly concentrated in the area of District 5 and District 11. The noodles of hu tieu sa te resemble the pho noodles from the north of Vietnam. This is a very unique dish, you can easily spot about 20 ingredients in a bowl of noodles such as peanuts, sesame, garlic, chili, and cinnamon. The mix of flavors brings a faint aroma and a very typical greasy taste. In addition to spices, ingredients used in hu tieu sa te are meatballs, medium rare beef, tendon, or venison and pork for you to easily choose from.
Hu Tieu Sa Dec
Although full of familiar ingredients such as shrimp, meat, and liver, hu tieu Sa Dec has its own distinction which helps it to stand out from hu tieu my tho and hu tieu nam vang. If hu tieu nam vang noodles are white, small and soft, the noodles of hu tieu Sa Dec are big, slightly crunchy, and chewy with a milky color. The easiest way to recognize this dish is the clear, sweet broth which combines with other ingredients to create a perfect symphony of flavors. Add scallions and cilantro and you won’t be able to resist hu tieu Sa Dec, its allure is unmistakable.
Hu Tieu Suon Non – Rice Noodles with Pork Ribs
Although hu tieu suon non (derived from the city of the sea, Vung Tau) is not as common as other types of hu tieu, it still won the hearts of many diners because of its delicious taste. Hu tieu suon non is a variation of hu tieu nam vang so instead of shrimp, liver, and pork, the stars of the dish are small ribs which are full of flavor. The vendors choose ribs that are low in fat and chop them into bite size pieces and then cook until tender. That’s when the broth becomes imbued with the bone’s sweetness. Served with hu tieu suon non is a plate of fresh, green salad, lettuce, and celery with a tasty cup of dipping sauce to enhance the flavor of the dish.
Hu Tieu Chay for Vegetarian
Surprisingly, vegetarian hu tieu is not any less delicious than bowls containing meat. Moreover, it’s beneficial for your health as the ingredients include many kinds of veggies such as mushroom, carrot, daikon, and luffa gourd. As for the accouterments, we have toasted peanut, crispy vegetarian fried roll (cha gio chay), bean curd sheet, deep-fried tofu, deep-fried onion, coriander, other herbs, and stir-fried mixed mushrooms.