Bình Dương is home to bánh bèo bì (steamed rice cake topped with pork skin), best served at Mỹ Liên's restaurant, which is over 100 years old.
The dish attracts dinners with its tasty flavours from steamed rice, green beans, pork skin, powdered grilled rice, fresh herbs and cucumber threads. However, the dish is more enjoyable with a sweet and sour sauce of dried radish, grated carrots and minced fresh chilli, said a businesswoman named Hồ Hồng Đào from HCM City.
|Bình Dương Province is famous for its bánh bèo bì (steamed rice cake topped with threads pork skin). Photo grf.vn|
The dish came into being more than 100 years ago and is attributed to Đỗ Thị Kiểng.
Kiểng's grandchild, Thái Thị Tuyết, said the shop is in her house, near the famous Búng Market. When Kiểng passed away, her daughter and younger siblings took over.
|The dish is perfect when dipped into a special sauce made of Phú Quốc fish sauce and other ingredients. Photo baogiaothong.vn|
In the past, the shop, which is now located in Bình Dương Province’s An Thành Town of Thuận An District, was a favourite destination of famous reformed artists such as Út Bạch Lan, Bạch Tuyết and rich men from HCM City and surrounding provinces, said Tuyết.
She said she has to choose soft rice variety to make the cake so that eaters can feel it melt in the mouth. She also chosen back pork skin to boil it and cut it into threads. The lean pork is boiled, also cut into threads then mixed them with minced garlic, powdered grilled rice, quality fish sauce, salt and pepper.
|Many dinners adore Bình Dương's bánh bèo bì. Photo baogiaothong.vn|
The rice should be soaked in warm water for four hours before grounding. After ground, the wet rice dough should be settled over a night, then pour water on top out before adding a quantity of boiled water and stirring the dough well.
The next step is to peel the water-soaked green beans and steam and grind them into a dough.
"I often choose unpeeled green beans because they are much more fragrant and soft," Tuyết said.
In the past, Kiểng's shop had no proper name until her daughter took over to manage the shop. She named her shop Mỹ Liên after her younger sister Nguyễn Thị Liên and her daughter Nguyễn Thị Mỹ.
|The dish attracts locals and foreigners. Photo 2dep.vn|
The shop has had its name Mỹ Liên since then, Tuyết said.
For the dipping sauce, Tuyết orders fish sauce from Phú Quốc Island in Kiên Giang Province, to make the dipping sauce. Then, she adds sugar, vinegar, minced garlic, chilli, and lemon juice.
Hồ Hồng Đào from HCM City said that she often brings her family to enjoy bánh bèo bì at Mỹ Liên shop every weekend.
"When my mother was alive, she often brought us to Bình Dương to enjoy this dish. Now it is one of the favourite breakfasts in my family. Mỹ Liên shop is also a familiar place for me and my friends to meet together, "Đào said.
The dish has been recognised among the top 50 Việt Nam specialities since 2013. It has attracted a lot of dinners, including foreign travellers and tourists to Bình Dương, said an official from the provincial Department of Culture, Sports and Tourism. VNS