A must-try specialty of Văn Chấn District in the northern province of Yên Bái in autumn is cốm (young sticky rice), made from Tú Lệ glutinous rice grown in the valley.
|Tú Lệ glutinous rice is sieved to get rid of the husks. VNA/VNS Photo Thế Duyệt|
This particular grain of rice has large, round seeds and when it is cooked, the rice has a special soft and fragrant taste. When it is processed into cốm, it tastes sweet and pleasant and has a green colour.
|Two Thái ethnic women are pictured with specialty of their hometown - Tú Lệ glutinous rice. VNA/VNS Photo Tiến Khánh|
According to locals, the deliciousness of the rice is due to the cool climate all year round in the region.
In addition, the rich humus and minerals of the soil and the transparent water of the stream flowing from the top of Khau Phạ Pass are natural factors that create the original flavour of Tú Lệ glutinous rice.
|One stage in making cốm is pounding them in the stone mortar to soften the grains, which also demands typical technique and experience. VNA/VNS Photo Tiến Khánh|
Thị Sáng, a villager from Nà Lóng Village, said the stages of making cốm are complicated. At the start of Tú Lệ nugget season, the villagers start to harvest the rice from 5am and then only the newly ripe rice are carefully selected to make delicious nuggets.
|Tú Lệ glutinous rice is dried in a large pan over a soft fire to make cốm. VNA/VNS Photo Tiến Khánh|
Currently, all villagers in Tú Lệ Commune are involved in producing nuggets. Each local family can make around 20kg per day. Each kilo of Tú Lệ nuggets could be sold at VNĐ100,000 (US$4,4), which has become their major source of income. VNS
|Tú Lệ young sticky rice is famed for its sweetness, fragrance and eye-catching greenish hue. Photo vyctravel.com|