Culinary specialties in Mekong Delta flood season

Feb 17 2020 - Southern Vietnamese Cuisine

Missed culinary flood season

People in my hometown have the saying: "6 months of riding dry land, half a year walking on water" to talk about the water cycle of the Mekong River. More than a dozen years away from home to Saigon, but whenever the media reported the flood season, my heart was still hangover. Childhood memories like rushing back, intact as ever. My home is located in a remote and remote area, going to high school and going to town and via a small ferry. During the flooding season, the water rushes and drifts the small ferry about a kilometer away from the pier. Yet no one is afraid but also rejoice because of being late for a proper reason, not afraid of the teacher shouting.

The people of my hometown welcomed the floods as if welcoming a friend from far away. And never know, the phrase "living with floods" they called dearly, so generously! Most days when we do not go to school, we canoe along with our adults to spread the net and ignore the sword. The vastness of the watery fields, the towering of old jaggery and the sound of fish catching bait make everyone fall in love.

This is a good season for food in the flooding season because fishes from the upstream have been unspeakably numerous, so they have just let go of their nets or put their roofs, fishing hooks ... and after a while, they feel heavy. Many types of copper fish such as young snout, perch, snakehead, catfish, choke, and loach ... then eels, turtles, snakes should soon be full of canoes.

Catching hamsters is a "trick" that boys are familiar with "six old phrases". White water, mice full of rice to find high mounds, cajuput branches to shelter should be very easy to catch. Softer, the girls let go of the perch, and perch, sometimes the lucky people "clicked" on both snakehead and catfish. Although not a "fish-killing" hand, but everyone is happy to need a tired arm.

At the point where there are Dien Dien yellow flowers bursting with yellow flowers, the whole crowd eagerly picked and then reveled in a busy river. Of course, the stout blooms, blue, purple enough not to escape from reach because this is the material for a delicious dinner.

Food of ten thousand people

After the sun, catching fish, bathing in the field, the spoils brought by my mother turned into attractive delicacies. In the countryside at that time, when pork and beef were considered a luxury item because of mines, a boat full of fish and shrimp during the flood season was a dream meal for us. "Duplicate" of fish flexible - classic cotton whether cooked separately or in combination are very delicious. Head of water, soft boneless young fish, fresh meat should pepper, fried dough or poured cotton pancakes crazy classic is the number one. By the end of the flood season, the fish is as big as a big toe, belly is full of fat, the bamboo grilled bamboo clamp is all gone.

My sisters love the feeling of sitting on the sour bowl of sweet sour gourami fish just cooked. The sweetness of the fish, the slight sourness of tamarind, the crispy aroma and the slightly ring of crazy cotton blended together ... making everyone crave the last piece. And then add the aromatic hotpot with nose, cooked with perch, fresh linh fish, dip water lilies, cotton and other fresh, clean copper vegetables to pick and eat with a new bowl of rice.

The house has a distinguished guest, who just needs a big snakehead fish lying in a jar. After picking some young lotus leaves, the guest is treated. Grilled snakehead fish rolled with lotus leaf, eaten young, accompanied with herbs, star fruit, sour banana ... dipped in cup of sour - spicy - salty - sweet fish sauce, just remembering it was also saliva. Eat pieces of grilled snakehead fish, add a little more fresh noodles roll on, it seems like the whole flood season is absorbed in each senses. To fake more, can make more dishes baked roasted coconut or coconut. The sweet and chewy taste of smart, well-marinated, golden marinated meat, is not considered to be lost ... half a life.

Life changes, I have the opportunity to travel everywhere to open my eyes, but my beloved homeland with diverse cuisines in the flooding season, the flooding season, is an invaluable asset. Then every time the water overflowed, leaving all the streets in the city, I frantically went home to rowboat to pick beautiful cotton, put roofing, fishing ... to relive the quietest time in my life, to hear echoes. ancient banks resounded immense country. I am rich and proud in the West, please visit once!

Category: Southern Vietnamese Cuisine