Nha Trang-style tuna noodle soup in Saigon

A food stall in Saigon has become well-known for its tuna darne noodle soup, a dish originating in the coastal resort town of Nha Trang.

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A food stall in Saigon has become well-known for its tuna darne noodle soup, a dish originating in the coastal resort town of Nha Trang.

Though Nha Trang cuisine is well known in Saigon, there are few places that serve such an authentic tuna noodle soup in town.

The noodles come in a clear savory soup with the highlight being the darne of tuna served along with fish cakes, quail eggs and a hearty sprinkling of chives.

At the eatery at 43CT Tam Dao Street, Ward 15, District 10, customers can choose between a standard bowl for VND32,000 ($1.38) and a special bowl with extra fillings for VND40,000 ($1.73).

A bowl of salmon fish noodle soup. Photo by lanwiththi.

A bowl of tuna fish noodle soup. Photo by lanwiththi.

They can also choose from various types of Vietnamese noodles with different textures. While the Nha Trang style of noodles has a more chewy texture, there is also a softer kind made from rice and tapioca starch.

The noodles are served with various kinds of fillings. One can start with the fish cakes, with black pepper, before moving to the quail eggs and finally the highlight of the meal, the tuna slice.

Cooked freshly, the fish slices all have a nice proportion of lean meat and fat, and blend nicely with the fish broth. The flavor is further elevated by chives and a small bucket of complimentary fresh herbs.

Though the dish is quite sweet, the stall provides a handy remedy of fresh lime juice and fish sauce, which customers can use to mix and match to suit their taste buds.

The stall also sells its signature fish cakes for VND190,000 ($8.20) a kilogram.

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