The festival is held in order to commemorate Phan Tay Nhac, a general of the 18th Hung King. Legend has it that one day Nhac led his guerrilla soldiers past Thi Cam village as they chased away the Chinese Shu invaders, and local villagers asked to join his force.

The general then decided to host a rice cooking contest as a way of selecting a good chef. After the general died, he was honoured as the village’s god. Thi Cam villagers have since organised a rice cooking contest each year to express their gratitude to the general.

During the rice cooking contest, four groups of competitors have to husk rice, get water, make a fire, and cook the rice. A jury comprising of respected village chiefs then select the winners of the contest.

Each team are given one kg of rice paddy to cook rice in the competition.

Competitors grind the grains.

The rice pot is kept inside burning straw.

The pot is then retrieved from burning ashes after half an hour. The judges then get to sample the rice and give awards to the various winners.

After finding the four rice cookers, the judging panel make four rice bowls as offerings to the village’s tutelary god.

After the competition, participating teams provide rice for villagers to wish for a prosperous and happy new year ahead.