Banh Hoi (Rice noodle sheet)

Its name is a little bit confusing, it’s actually not a cake at all, but a dish of thin rice noodles woven into intricate bundles.


In spite of the texture and taste being quite similar to vermicelli‘s, fresh banh hoi is distinctively thin and soft. Processing banh hoi entails a number of simple steps and a few ingredients. Firstly, soaked rice is ground with clean water by a mill, creating a flour solution. Next, the flour is cooked, while being stirred regularly until it starts to coagulate and is ready to press. The pressing machine turns the dough into long thin strands that are grouped into sheets, placed on banana leaves and then steamed for a while. Finally they are cooled and the fresh banh hoi is done.

Traditionally banh hoi is brushed with chopped scallions or garlic chives sautéed in oil, and commonly served with chao tom or grilled pork. To make chao tom, shrimp paste is molded around a sugar cane stick and then broiled. Place chao tom or grilled pork on the noodle sheet, roll it up, pour spicy fish sauce on and then slowly enjoy this perfect combination.