Gia Lai is a mountainous province which boasts a distinctive culture and a cuisine embracing traditions and modernity. Among the specialties symbolizing the local cuisine, Gia Lai-style banh canh (rice noodle soup) should be the first to come.
Banh canh (rice noodle soup) is a familiar dish in Vietnam, including famous versions such as Trang Bang rice noodle soup, Phan Rang noodle soup with fish paste, Phu Yen chive rice noodle soup, etc. Yet Gia Lai-style rice noodle soup is also worth a try.
Gia Lai-style rice noodles are made from rice powder or tapioca starch. Local cooks in the province usually choose tapioca starch so that their noodles have a soft chewy texture. In fact, tapioca starch is a product extracted from cassava roots. That makes the noodles not too soft like others.
The broth is made by boiling pork bones before shrimp, fish paste and pork leg are added. Next, chili powder is added to the broth to make it tastier and have an eye-catching color.
Herbs and bean sprouts are indispensable to the dish.
A bowl of Gia Lai-rice noodle soup will have some pepper, minced green onion and cilantro, and served with a small bowl of chili dipping sauce.
The rustic dish is a perfect combination of different ingredients that will satisfy your sense of taste.
By Lam Nhu