Fermented, salted tiny tiny shrimp. An employee instructed us to mix it in the soup. Btw, every meal comes with a little plate of raw garlic cloves and green chillies. I have seen how Korean eat this: dip them in the chilli sauce and then straight into the mouth. Also, some restaurants do have round chopsticks, as seen in these photos. My chopstick skills are rubbish but round ones are a tad easier to handle.
Lunch on the 31st. Tried “sea pineapple”, finally. Now I know what it tastes like and there’s no need to repeat the experience. I first came across this curious creature in Hokkaido, Japan. You are supposed to eat it raw with Gochujang but the fish stallholder said it could also be steamed, slightly.
Innards removed and is served raw (in the photo below) as I wanted to try it as sashimi first. I have an aversion to slimy and slippery textures so this is like facing my “fear”. The best I can describe eating it is it’s like eating a live toad. The exterior is hard and rough, the interior is jelly-like. Smells strongly of iodine but not as strong as sea squirts I had in Chile.
Nice. I had some very good rice soup with sundae when I was in Busan.
Today was com hen. Which is clam rice. It also had peanuts, small fried noodles , lots of mint and puffed pig skin. Served cold you add clam broth to warm it all up. It was very tasty.
PB, I have been wanting to make clam rice. Never had it in VN, when I was a novice traveller/eater.
Really enjoyed this meal at a homely restaurant. Cheap and filling. There’s no meat but the sauce contains fermented fish. A lot of sauces here tend to contain fermented or salted fish or shrimp, Busan being a coastal town known for its superb seafood.
Barley broth (unseasoned) to wash everything down.
I was looking around to see how Koreans eat this meal. An elderly woman at the next table saw that and was showing me (loudly) how it’s done. There’s a reason why the rice bowl is big (in this case a mix of rice and barley). Locals just dump the side dishes on top of the rice then mix everything up real well. How I like mine:
I always try to sit near the kitchen. The set-up here (at least in Busan) is usually the kitchen out front. You walk through the kitchen to get to the table. Most places also have a traditional sitting area (sit on the floor with your legs dangling in a hole under the table).
PS: Koreans do eat open-mouthed but it’s not as horrendous as in China. Korea became industrialised in so short a time one can’t expect things to change as quickly in other aspects of the culture. Manners which you might find “gross”, “annoying” or “repugnant” in Korea are 20 times worse in China.
Now in Hanoi. Lunch was bun moc thit. The broth was a bit bland but was improved with the addition of pickled bamboo shoots that were at the table. The pork was just ok but the noodles had a really good texture. The outstanding ingredient was the herb sausage balls studded with woodear mushroom, absolutely delicious.
That spider crab looks delicious. I’ve had a fair bit of pho in Vietnam. I’n the South it’s with round noodles ( always had it with flat noodles in London) and large plate of herbs and bean sprouts to add yourself. I’n the north it’s flat noodles and just a sprinkle of herbs already added. In London you get the herbs to add but not as many as in Vietnam so it seems to be a hybrid style in London.
I’m still in Hanoi, yesterday’s lunch was bun cha at Huong Lien. It was very tasty but the broth was far too sweet for me. I had to add a lot of chill vinegar. This was where Obama ate with Anthony Bourdain in 2016. There’s at least 5 other bun cha places on the same street though this is the only proper restaurant rather than a space being open to the street which was probably why they pickled it.
Had this thing the day before whilst wandering round the market. Seems there’s usually a queue for snacks. One person forms the dough, one person collects money and tells people where to queue, one person fries the dough.
The brown thing in the container is “chocolate” powder. The dough is very wet.
I’m still in Hanoi but am off to The Philippines tomorrow night.
Day before yesterday was bun rieu cau. Very particular to Hanoi. Rice noodles in a tomato broth with fried tofu and a pounded crab meat dumpling. Would be lovely on a hot day but it’s grey and drizzly at the moment. Just like being in England.
I’m not sure of the Vietnamese name but today I had wonton noodle soup. I passed the stall and the wontons looked excellent, I was not disappointed on the wonton front. Shrimp paste in the broth which I’ve not encountered before.
Went to the meat market for a late lunch. This meat market is a gruesome place but still nice and clean. The meat section at a market in China takes the biscuit, though. So ghastly.
Many butchers or meat shops have menus like this out front with pre-packaged meat platters in the cabinet to tempt you. You can order the cuts individually but I saw most people bring the packages with them to the restaurant to be cooked.
Naf, both. There are specific areas, like markets and shopping streets. It seems Koreans can’t walk more than 5m without eating something so there’s always some place to buy street food or a light bite.
Last lunches in Seoul. There are 2 fried chicken places on the same street in my lodging’s neighbourhood. Fried chicken, Korean style to be precise, is very popular here. Everyone has their own secret recipes. Wish I could try them all.