The Tempinis diaries

November 18, 2007

Saigon Eats: 46A Bahn Xeo

Filed under: food, travel — Tags: , , , — toru @ 1:59 pm

Mrs. T and I are very lucky in the sense that we have travelled to many places before. But we realised that many of the countries that we have gone to were in the US, Europe and Australia.  We thought it was quite a shame that we have not travelled widely in this region.  Recently, we decided to go to Ho Chi Minh city for 3 days.  It was a pretty enjoyable trip apart from the really expensive hotel (New World Hotel – worn out but superb location) and the nightmare of crossing Vietnamese roads.  The Vietnamese people were warm, gentle and pleasant.  And no one tried to rip us off.  What we really enjoyed about the trip was the food.  Every meal was simply delicious!  Even Mrs. T, the world’s most finicky and picky eater, said she didn’t have a bad meal in Vietnam.  I loved all the vegetables and rice paper wraps dipped in fish sauce.  Only draw back is the stinky fingers after dipping it in fish sauce.  

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The best place to start your research on food in Saigon is Graham Holliday’s fantastic blog Noodlepie.  This was where I discovered 46A Banh Xeo.  KY Eats also has a really good post on this stall.  Bahn Xeo  is a delicious crispy crepe with bean sprouts, slivers of pork and shrimps.  You tear it off with your chop sticks and wrap it with some leaves and dip it into fish sauce.  It was really good.  I went there for breakfast and discovered they only open at 11 am.  Mrs. T and I mulled around at a fruit juice bar in the same lane.  I thought the wait was worth it.  It was simply yummy and I got to live out my Anthony Bourdain fantasy of eating exotic Vietnamese food.   Mrs. T thought it was a bit too oily but I didn’t think so.  I ate her Bahn Xeo while she ate the bean sprouts (which was fine with me).  They have other great stuff there for dinner as well but I guess that’s the subject of another post.

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The lady preparing the bahn xeo with charcoal and wood fire.  When I first got out of the taxi and smelt the fire, it reminded me of my late grandmother’s house in Malaysia.  She had such a stove too. 

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