09 March 2011

Asia (food) tour part 1

I only need one word to describe what I love about Asia: FOOD. For me it is always about the food. I agree there is more to love about Asia, but for me the food has always taken first place. Let me take you on our (food) tour through Asia.

We did 6 different countries in about 5 weeks. We flew from Amsterdam to Kuala Lumpur where we had an 8 hour delay. This gave us the opportunity to head in to Kuala Lumpur and to have a taste of what Malaysia had to offer. From the airport it took us (first timers) 3 hours to get to the Petronas Twin Towers, one of the biggest trademark of Malaysia. If you know the way you might be able to get there in half the time.
Located at the feet of the Petronas Towers is a huge shopping centre. It features mostly foreign luxury goods and high-street labels. Unfortunately we didn’t had a lot of time for shopping, but it was definitely a good place to go back to.

Since our time was limited we head straight to the food court for early lunch. Too bad not all the vendors were open yet, so we had limited choice of food. From my brief encounter with Malaysian food I can say that they like it spicy! Can’t wait to explore it during my next hopefully longer visit.

We landed in Vietnam in the afternoon on New Years eve. Not a single soul on the streets. Everyone already returned to their family for Tet. The only week in the year that Saigon is not filled with motor bikes. The Vietnamese sure love their New Year. It is one of the few times in a year that they have time off and most stores and restaurants closes their doors. The few restaurants still open jagged up the price with as much as 30% on top of the total.
The year of the cat started on 3 February 2011. This is the only animal in the zodiac that is different from the Chinese one. They celebrate the year of the rabbit, we celebrate the year of the cat.
A couple of days after New Years the city slowly gets filled with people and people and bikes.
Lots of motor bikes. It seems to get more crowded every year. Crossing the streets is a nightmare! The best way to do it is with your eyes closed and hoping that they will avoid you!
Notting is more refreshing then fresh coconut juice. With every meal I had I ordered one. Not only the juice is nice and refreshing, but the young coconut flesh is edible as well. That's why a coconut is always paired with a straw and a spoon. So after you drink the delicious juice you can dig in the flesh.

If you are lucky enough to have a very very young coconut you can scrap the flesh right into the juice and drink it together. I only had that happen once. All the other times it was a slightly older coconut, which will take a little bit more effort to get the flesh out. Still jummy though.
This very very pretty plate has different typical Vietnamese dishes. It was almost too pretty to eat and I am ashamed to admit that I don't remember all the names. These recipes are passed down from generation on generation and unfortunately no one in my family knows how to make it. So no passing down to me =(  
But I still enjoy eating it though!
I am just not sure why they put the pork skin chip on top of the food. It was a odd combination and didn't pair well with the food either. No need to say that that was the only thing left on the plate.
The "banh bot loc" is a see-through, chewy bite sized piece with one or two little shrimps in it.
These delicate flowers looked better then they tasted, if you eat them like this. If you pair them with some fish sauce, it is awesome!
The "bunh bo hue" same as the restaurants name was good, but not spectacular. I noticed this after I tasted the bunh bo hue sold close by my brother in law's house. This lady sells it in front of her house so it is "semi" street food. The hubby use to go out and get some to go to bring home to me. JUMMIE! I think I ate it at least 3-4 times for breakfast.
This bunh thit nuong has spring rolls, nem nuong and some slices of meat. I was too busy eating my bunh bo hue to pay attention to this dish (it was my hubbie's). According to him it was so so. Notting to write home about.
Long after lunch we ended up at the Dragon Hotpot for some happy hour beer. The hubby had some Tiger on draught (which he liked so much, we came back for it) and we ordered some fried squid tentacles. The squid was goooooood!!! They were crunchy on the outside and soft and moist on the inside. 

If you would like to try them make sure you come when they have happy hour (between 3 and 6). After that they only have fried squid, which is the squids body and not half as good as the tentacles.

To be continued...  

1 comment:

  1. Those dishes look delicious. Thansk for sharing!


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