Com tam (broken rice)
When you come to Ho Chi Minh City, you should try this dish at least once time, and you will not regret. Com tam can be found at every street corner in Saigon. Most Com tam joints are street stalls but more and more, Com tam has been cropping up on the menus of high-end restaurants. Com tam Sai Gon is usually served with a caramelized pork chop, shredded pork skin, steamed egg cake, a bed of pickled vegetables and garlic chive oil.
Hu tieu (noodle soup with pork)
Originally from Cambodia, where it is known as kuy teav, hu tieu has since acquired features unique to Vietnamese cuisine. Hu tieu consists of boiled rice noodles, pork, shrimp, quail eggs, with sliced pork’s liver and heart. Different locals make hu tieu differently, and two main varieties are Nam Vang and My Tho.
Hu tieu can both be served dry or wet depends on your preference. Many Saigonese prefer the dry version because of the richness of its flavor.
Banh mi (Vietnamese baguette)
Banh mi is one of the most popular Vietnamese specialties abroad, and it is also known as a typical breakfast in Vietnam, especially if you are in a hurry. Grabbing a loaf of banh mi on the way to your work is a great idea. Undoudtedly, banh mi is one of Vietnam’s greatest culinary gifts to the world, and there is no better place to try one these special sandwiches than in Ho Chi Minh City. Not only layered with meat, smothered in pate and mayo, and topped with fresh herbs, pickles, and chili creates a texture and flavor party, you can enjoy many kinds of toppings inside Vietnamese bread.
Xoi (sticky rice)
Every day in Vietnam, you see kids tromping off to school, swinging their Xoi breakfast in little plastic bags. It is a glutinous rice base with any number of toppings, including fried onions, mung beans, quail eggs and sliced sausage.
Originating in northern Vietnam and got introduced to other parts of Vietnam through Vietnamese immigration, Pho has become the most popular dish in Vietnam. It is almost impossible to walk a block in Vietnam’s major cities without bumping into a crowd of hungry patrons slurping noodles at a makeshift pho stand. This simple staple consisting of a salty broth, fresh noodles, a sprinkling of herbs and chicken or beef, features predominately in the local diet and understandably so. It is cheap, tasty, and widely available at all hours.
Banh cuon (Vietnamese steamed rice rolls)
Banh cuon is a kind of Vietnamese pancake, made by steaming fermented rice batter over a cloth to make thin, wavy sheets. Once you add in the minced shallots, ground pork, mushrooms and some fish sauce, you have a healthy and filling breakfast.
Ca phe sua da (Vietnamese iced coffee)
Vietnam is currently the world’s 2nd largest coffee exporter, as the highland region has been transformed into a vast of coffee farms and plantations. Vietnamese, therefore, take great pride in their coffee. For almost occasions, hanging out with friends, meetings, a Vietnamese local can be found at one of Ho Chi Minh’s numerous coffee shops. Enjoy a cup of coffee mixed with condensed milk and get started discovering this vibrant city.