It’s been awhile since my last post. My apologies! I’ve been rather busy since I last updated, as Tet holiday ended and I started up work again. I also moved! I’ll post pictures as soon as I have everything unpacked and looking nice!
The day after Tet, I visited two temples with my friend’s family. It was a fascinating, but overstimulating day with what seemed like thousands of people, motorbikes, sights, sounds and smells.
This picture really doesn’t do give the true feeling of the number of people at the temple. Lots and lots of activity!
An altar filled with gifts of paper hats and shoes, fruit, sweets and fake money, with maybe some real money mixed in as well.
Gives you a better idea of the vast number of people.
Burning joss paper to send gifts to the gods. Gifts include paper money, shoes, hats, coins and flowers. Read more about this custom here.
On to the next temple! This man is writing down the family’s wishes in the new year in ancient Vietnamese (using Chinese characters).
Heading into the temple. So many people!
Bánh đúc lạc. So far my least favorite. The pancake/patty itself isn’t too bad; it’s made up of rice flour and tapioca (and I read somewhere lime…as in the mineral) and has peanuts inside. The sauce, made of fermented soy bean paste, is what really gets me. Perhaps my tastebuds aren’t sophisticated enough, but it just tastes rotten to me!
I can’t say I’ve tried out much street food since I’ve been here, and that’s partly because I’m a vegetarian and much of the street food has meat in it. It’s probably time to be more adventurous though! I have however, been introduced to the world of street food sweets. “Chè” refers to a kind of sweet, soup-like food. There are several kinds, and to be honest I haven’t really figured out the names. The stands are easy to pick out though as there will be bowls filled brightly colored foods.
From what I can tell, each bowl contains a different variety of chè. There are different kinds of sweet beans, sweet corn, glass jelly, tapioca and fruit as well as coconut milk. Just have a bowl or glass filled with ingredients of your choice and top it off with a bit of crushed ice. My absolute favorite ingredient is lychee, which are the yellowish fruits pictured above.
As you can tell, this isn’t from the same place as above, but is a much prettier one with ingredients that were chosen for me.
Mix it all together and enjoy! Yum! Now I’m hungry…
Also, a bit of an update for you…I’m employed! I start tomorrow and I’m pretty excited about it. I’ll be teaching English to primary school kids. Yay for having a job!
Since this post was about food, I’ll end with something else. Remember those plastic animals from the night market? Well, I bought one:
and look what he does!!!
Definitely worth the 20,000 VND I spent. Oh, and please like my page on Facebook!