Hai Phong city is not only famous for its unique tourist destinations but also its sophisticated, diverse cuisine.
Each locality in Hai Phong has its unique dishes. If coming to Thuy Nguyen district, tourists must try its famous bun noodles roll.
|Photo: Bun noodles roll of Thuy Nguyen district, Hai Phong city /Dan tri
Thuy Nguyen bun noodles roll (cuốn Thủy Nguyên) was created by people from the Trinh village in Thuy Nguyen. It is also known by its other names, shrimps with rice noodles roll (cuốn bún tôm) or noodles with blanched scallion leaves (cuốn hành trần).
Although it is a popular dish made from readily available ingredients, Thuy Nguyen bun noodles roll is not easy to prepare. From selecting the ingredients to rolling and decorating the dish, every step demonstrates the delicacy of Thuy Nguyen cuisine and the skills of the cook.
To make Thuy Nguyen bun noodles roll, the cook needs to prepare 10 different ingredients, including lettuce, coriander, Thai basil, fresh spring onion or scallion, half lean-half fat pork, egg, fried tofu, prawns, lean pork paste, and bun noodles.
These ingredients must be selected carefully. Spring onions or scallions must be fresh, big, and of similar length. Bun noodles must come from Trinh Xa village. Prawns must be fresh and have a similar size. Lettuce must not be too big or crushed.
|Photo: The ingredients are arranged on a tray to put together more easily / Dantri
Making Thuy Nguyen bun noodles roll is time-consuming and requires a lot of patience. The cook needs to be meticulous and concentrated in every step of preparing each ingredient.
Eggs are beaten well, then poured just enough into a pan to create thin, shiny layers of omelette. Prawns are tossed in a hot pan or pot until they are crunchy and have a bright red color. Spring onions are dipped into boiling water so they can be wrapped around the rolls easily while still retain their umami flavor. Fried tofu is cut into thin strips length-wise. Bun noodles are cut into bite-size lengths. Pork is boiled, then cut into strips. All ingredients must be thin and of equal size, so they won’t fall out or break when put together.
|Photo: Thin layer of omelette / Tinmoi.vn
The final stage, rolling, is the most difficult one. After being prepared, all ingredients are arranged on a big tray so they can be put together more easily.
First, the cook takes a piece of lettuce, folds it, then puts coriander and Thai basil on, followed by bun noodles, prawns, pork paste, tofu, boiled pork, and egg in ways that allow all ingredients to be seen. Finally, the cook will use spring onions to tie all ingredients together.
An acceptable Thuy Nguyen bun noodles roll must showcase the distinctive color of its ingredients, such as the whiteness of bun noodles, yellow of fried egg, green of vegetables, and redness of prawns. The lettuce leaf must be folded just enough so it will not hide other ingredients.
|Photo: Dipping sauce for Thuy Nguyen bun noodles roll / Phunutoday
The dipping sauce is also important to Thuy Nguyen bun noodles roll.
The sauce must be made from genuine fish sauce, mixed with sugar, lime juice, garlic, and chilly. Some cooks add thinly sliced carrots and onions to add more flavor and color to the sauce.
Thuy Nguyen bun noodles roll is easy to digest and can bring some relief to the stomach after people have eaten greasy heavy food. Because of this, the dish often appears on the menus in Tet holidays, parties, and wedding ceremonies in Thuy Nguyen.
In Thuy Nguyen, tourists can find this famous dish in large markets like Trinh Xa market in Thien Huong commune or the central market in Nui Deo town. Each roll may cost between VND 2,500 to VND 3,000.