Northern-style vermicelli is crowded in the middle of Saigon

The bowl of vermicelli noodles is cooked by Mrs. Hai in the North with the main ingredients being field crabs, fresh snails, and tomatoes served with grated banana corn, split water spinach, bean sprouts…

In the alley on Ky Dong Street, District 3, is a noodle shop that has been attached to generations of Saigon people for many years. The owner of the restaurant is Mrs. Hai, a native of Thai Binh, living in Saigon since the 1980s. The crab noodle dish was decided by her to cook and sell after doing many different jobs to make a living.

The bowl of vermicelli noodles has an eye-catching color, with a plate of fresh vegetables of all kinds, dipped with ginger fish sauce. Photo: Khanh Thien

Open from 7am, the shop attracts customers until 9pm every day. On the menu of the restaurant, crab noodle soup is a favorite dish of many diners.

The noodle dish is cooked according to the Northern taste with ingredients such as field crabs, snails, tomatoes… According to the staff, in order not to damage the broth, the shop especially chooses fresh field crabs and snails. for processing. Each crab will be separated, washed, pureed and cooked. The restaurant does not mix with minced meat or eggs because it wants to keep the full flavor of the crab.

The bricks in the apricot are taken out to separate, non-fragrant with fat, oil, and onions to create a natural and eye-catching color. Snails, after boiling, just cooked, take out the meat, remove the intestines, wash, cut in half and stir-fry to remove the fishy smell. In particular, the restaurant uses home-cooked wine wort to help the broth have a sour taste. The combination of necessary ingredients and typical spices has helped the crab noodle dish at the restaurant attract customers from morning to night.

The accompanying vegetable part includes grated banana stems, herbs, grated banana corn, bean sprouts, split water spinach. Photo: Khanh Thien

Thanks to a large amount of field crab, the bowl of vermicelli is impressive with each array of curries, tomatoes, scallions, snail meat, and broth with eye-catching, hot colors. The vegetable plate is served with grated banana stem, grated banana, water spinach, perilla, and bean sprouts… These vegetables are grown by the owner’s family in the garden in Hoc Mon. In addition to vermicelli and raw vegetables, diners’ meals also have a cup of ginger fish sauce that is richly prepared to dip snails.

Depending on taste and preferences, diners can add a little shrimp paste to the vermicelli bowl. Because of the Northern style, the broth here is light. Diners if they like bold, can add a little fish sauce when eating.

Ms. Ngoc Mai (35 years old, district 1) said that she has been living from the North to the South for about 20 years, so she craves the taste of the countryside, especially crab noodle soup. And this shop is the address to enjoy the Northern standard noodle soup that her family often comes to every week.

The price of a bowl of vermicelli here ranges from 40,000 VND to 60,000 VND. In addition to snail crab vermicelli, the shop also has many dishes that diners can order, including snail stuffed with steamed meat with ginger leaves, bitter snail boiled with lemon leaves, snail sauteed with green banana, stewed with Northern medicine, typical drinks such as: crocodile water, apricots, cassava, tea leaves. In front of the shop, there is also a stall selling Northern specialties for those who are far from home to buy such as vermicelli, rice paper, rice wine, and sesame peanut candy…

Diners enjoy crab noodle soup prepared in the North at the restaurant. Photo: Khanh Thien

Although located in a small alley, the shop consists of 3 adjacent houses, with a spacious front yard, convenient for guests to park.