Selling jellyfish rolls on Hanoi street
A street shop in Hanoi is special in more ways than one: it is run by possibly the oldest hawker in the world and it serves the simplest yet most unique snack -- raw jellyfish in natural red dye.
This is how to eat the snack: Place small pieces of jellyfish on layers of aromatic leaves, then a piece of grilled tofu and a piece of coconut flesh on top, and fold the whole thing into a roll.
Nguyen Thi Gai, now almost 90, serves the snack in the mouth of an alley along Hang Chieu Street.
She sits under an old mahogany tree with two large basins in front. One of them is full of red jellyfish and the other has ingredients like fresh aromatic leaves, grilled tofu and pieces of coconut flesh to roll with the jellyfish, and lemon, red chilli, and fermented shrimp paste to make a dipping sauce for the roll.
Gai gets her supply from the nearby coastal city of Hai Phong, where people catch and clean jellyfish before soaking them in water together with the bark of bruguiera, a kind of mangrove tree, to give them the red color.
The jellyfish is transported to the capital in closed bamboo baskets, and they can stay for months without going bad.
Gai just has to put the jellyfish in saltwater before serving it to customers.
She cuts the jellyfish into small pieces with a bamboo stick, saying that helps reduce the odor better than a knife.
“The arms are crunchier, the bell is soft,” she says, giving both to some customers who try the dish for the first time.
“So next time you can tell me which kind you prefer.”
When the customers praise the cool fresh rolls as tasty, she smiles confidently.
“I know it; people have kept coming for all these years.”
Gai started the business when she was 19, selling three basins of jellyfish every day.
Her two daughters used to help with her little street shop, but now they have their own jobs, one as a domestic help and the other as a worker in the city’s environment company.
Then dunk the roll into the sauce. You need to squeeze lemon juice into the fermented shrimp paste, stir it until it foams, and add red chili.
Nguyen Thi Gai cuts jellyfish from a large basin into small pieces on a plate for her customer.
Her shop is a street corner in downtown Hanoi.
There is a season for jellyfish and her basins are only available between February and September.
A street vendor said she is addicted to the snack and eats it every week if Gai opens.
“I’ve been eating here for almost 20 years, ever since I moved to Hanoi.”
Gai charges VND25,000, a little more than a dollar, for each nutritious dish.
Some customers are willing to spend half of that to leave their vehicles at a parking lot to eat.
She only has a few plastic tools and so many of her customers order takeaways.
“A family books a shipment for its daughter in France once in a while. I have to put the fermented shrimp paste bottle in ten layers of covers,” Gai says.
Despite the large number of customers, she says she has never thought about opening a restaurant since she is too old and too poor for that.
She also believes the snack is attractive because of the simple settings.
Source: Thanh Nien News
Ha Noi has many specialties on offer but one of the most renowned snacks which most visitors to the capital want to bring home as a gift for family and friends is banh com (sweet, soft and fragrant green rice cake).
Following National Highway 70 which lies by imposingly high mountains of the northern province of Lao Cai, we arrived in Bac Ha District, which is known by the name “white plateau.”
The first Tam Giac Mach Flower Festival will be organised in the northwest province of Ha Giang from November 13-15.
Traditional celebrations of the Mid-Autumn festival for children will be held in Hanoi Museum on September 20 and 26 nights by Dinh Lang Viet (Vietnamese Communal House) group.
The temperatures getting cooler and leaves changing colour can only lead to one conclusion - autumn has arrived. Here are 10 reasons why Hanoi is best in autumn.
Cool air throughout the year and wonderful beaches are an excellent reason for tourists to visit Vietnam in summer.
Banh cuon (stuffed steamed rice wrapper roll) originates in the north. Over time, it has become a popular dish nationwide.
The World Spa Awards 2015 will be held for the first time in Vietnam at the InterContinental Danang Sun Peninsula Resort on September 14.
After Independence Day September 2, 1945, many famous works in Vietnam’s largest cities have been preserved very well.
Ha Long Bay is inarguably beautiful. With these aerial photographs, no one can deny the endowed beauty of this UNESCO World Heritage Site and a popular travel destination of Vietnam.
You can explore the roads of many barbeque restaurants in Saigon, such as Pham Van Dong in Go Vap district or Trung Son in District 8.
Da Nang's Fatfish restaurant offers a spectacular view of the river and two bridges, a unique, pool-inspired design and beautifully presented meats.
Hue’s imperial citadel attracts tourists because of its royal relics and beauty. Hue is also famous for more than 100 pagodas, many of them built in the 17th century.
In 1993, the Hue imperial complex was recognized by UNESCO as a World Cultural Heritage Site. The city has become a mecca of Vietnamese tourism.
On Monday night, Bia Craft held its soft-opening in Thao Dien in District 2, Ho Chi Minh City bringing a flood of new beers to a city not known for its variety.
An attractive, lush interior creates a soothing feeling at Nineteen11, a Vietnamese and Australian eatery in the basement of the Opera House.
Upon arrival in Danang City, we were recommended to explore Ban Co (chess board) on the peak of Son Tra Mountain, which is 693 meters above sea level.
Hundreds of kinds of snacks and dishes priced below VND30,000 ($1.5) are sold at night markets in Hanoi’s Old Quarter, attracting both domestic and foreign tourists.
A tour to the northern province of Ninh Binh may include trips to popular places like Tam Coc - Bich Dong and Trang An tourist area. However, a silent beauty, often unnoticed, sits in this part of the country that is truly worth the stop: the Van Long Lagoon.
Nostalgia is growing in Hanoi these days. With foreign cultural influences getting stronger in Vietnam, many residents in the capital city still want to live in the past, when life was hard but simple, if not poetic.
With rugged terrain and spectacular unspoiled scenery, Ma Pi Leng Pass is one of the "top four passes" of northern Vietnam.
Visiting the old villages of a few hundred years old, you will enjoy the quiet spaces of the countryside and discover the traditional architecture of Vietnam.
Hue Royal food dishes are the only royal dishes in Vietnam to be clearly recorded in old Vietnamese encyclopaedia and have strict rules regarding preparation.
“Xoi xeo” is a special dish for breakfast, especially with students and manual laborers thanks to its rather low price, its fulfillment and palatability.
Cooking class is another great activity to make your trip perfect, besides the ordinary sightseeing schedules.
Seen from above, the ancient village of Duong Lam, in Hanoi’s suburban district of Son Tay, still maintains the unique beauty of rural Vietnam in the past, with green spaces, houses with red tile roofs and laterite walls.
Southern cuisine always seems to have something new and attractive, based on the specific characteristics of its culture and climate and local tastes.
When you visit Vietnam, especially HCMC, make sure you will not forget to taste Two Bowls Pho Noodle Soup (Phở Hai Tô).
Ice cream lovers who have a chance to visit the ancient town of Hoi An in the central coast province of Quang Nam should head for Enjoy Restaurant-Bar-Gallery that offers 60 ice-cream flavors and over 20 toppings for guests to choose from.
Adventurous sports at sea as windsurfing, parasailing, jet ski and others will bring you an unforgettable experience this summer.
Standing on high-rise buildings to see the sun fading over the horizon to the darkened space, you will see daytime replaced by the shimmering lights of lamps around town.
This Ho Chi Minh City eatery that sells duck noodle soups is not just famous for its delicious taste but also the unique time of serving: the eatery opens for one hour only.
Travelling to Vietnam is like opening a bejewelled box and treating yourself with different layers of delights one after another. Each city has its own unique characteristics that beckon domestic and foreign visitors to explore.
A group of French experts are working on a plan to help the northern mountainous province of Lao Cai develop sustainable tourism in Bac Ha town, the second most popular destination in the locality.
Located in the city’s center with a very romantic scene, since the French colonial period, Mong Bridge has become the dating venue of young couples.
Van Long natural reserve is located in Gia Vien district, Ninh Binh province. About 90 kilometers from Hanoi, Van Long is not only a natural reserve of wetlands but also a cultural relic.
Banh da noodle dishes full to bursting with fish, pork, beef, herbs and bean sprouts please patrons who sit on small stools and happily eat a bowl – or two.
An endless blue embraces a white sand bank. Big rocks shaped like rough caricatures of different animals stand sentinel on the beach. You are admiring the scenery on Binh Lap Beach.
Vinasun Corp has announced a mobile app that allows passengers in Da Nang City to book a taxi.
Vietnamese banh mi sandwiches are regarded as one of the "super food" by foreign diners. The banh mi is a delicious and ever-varying combination of deli-style pork, pate and veggies, stuffed into a soft and crunchy French baguette.
Recently a number of lesser-known, remote islands across Vietnam have emerged as attractive tourist destinations. Co To in the northeastern province of Quang Ninh is one of them.
Every Saturday night a free playground for kids is set up on Dao Duy Tu Street in the Old Quarter, with about 30 different pieces of equipment and other things to keep the kids occupied.
Among the unique dishes in Quang Nam, mi Quang (Quang noodle) seems to be the most famous dish that every time a visitor comes to this central province, locals would be more than willing to present the dish.
Na Luong cave in Ha Giang province was named as a national site under a decision of the Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism.
The central city will penalise persons for littering on beaches as a pilot plan to improve civic behaviour in public places and promote a clean and safe environment this year.
These coffee shops are highly recommended by foreign tourists on the popular website TripAdvisor.
Far from Cua Dai beach about 15 kilometers, Cham is one of the places still remained original characters where visitors can not miss when travelling to Hoi An.
Sua chua nep cam, nem vuong, bun thang... are dish must to try when you visit Hanoi's Old Square.
A collection of summer festivals, titled Colour of Summer, has opened at Ba Na Hills Mountain resort in the Ba Na Mountains, 30km west of the central city of Da Nang.
Visiting to the beautiful coastal city of Nha Trang, tourists can not miss specialty: Goi ca (raw fish salad).
The fresh water lake in Ha Giang Province has trees growing from its bed.
When it comes to floating markets, people will immediately think of the peaceful Mekong Delta where southerners attach their rustic lives to boats and waterways.
Com Hen, bun bo Hue, banh Beo, banh Khoai, mam tom chua are just a few of the must-try dishes when you visit Hue.
Muong Khuong and Bat Xat districts in the northern mountainous province of Lao Cai boast high potential for tourism development alongside popular destinations like Sa Pa town and the Bac Ha market.
As one of the most prominent tourist destinations in Northern Vietnam, Sapa has a wide range of accommodations, varying from budget hotels to luxury resort. Here are the list of hotels and resorts in Sapa that are highly recommended by tourists.
Tuoi Tre News introduces you to a coconut thatch-making village which idyllically nestles in the proximity of UNESCO-recognized Hoi An Ancient Town in central Vietnam.
Writing about Ha Noi gives me immense pleasure. When I arrived here two and half years ago, I didn't know if I could ever love this place. It looked so strange, so indifferent. And it remained like that for a long time.
Free wifi, convenient transport, huge variety of cheap foods, resplendent sceneries... the list goes on.
Those who have a chance to travel to the northern province of Ninh Binh should check out a popular sightseeing spot in the locality, a temple dedicated to King Dinh Tien Hoang of the Dinh Dynasty in Truong Yen Commune of Hoa Lu District.
Tra Co, Dong Chau and Cat Ba are appropriate venues to dispel the heat of summer.
Com tam (broken rice), hu tieu (pork noodle soup), bun thit nuong (noodles with grilled pork), goi cuoi (spring rolls), and che (sweet soup-like dessert) are suggested by foreign tourists as the must-eat foods in HCM City.
Only a 3-hour drive with the route of 130 kilometers from Hanoi, Mai Chau – with peaceful space and fresh air – has become an ideal getaway to unwind from all the stress and retreat from the hot summer days in the bustling city.
Hanoians can be proud of their famous dish “Bun cha” (vermicelli with grilled pork), which is similar to the dish from Hue.
Tien Yen is a small town in QuangNinh province. From Ha Long City, you can easily get there by driving 70km towards the North on the National Highway 18.
People say that, not eat Au Tau porridge when coming to Ha Giang is considered have not been to Ha Giang yet.
With its gigantic landscape and precious natural resources, Na Hang Eco-Tourism Zone in the highland district of the northern province of Tuyen Quang has become a popular tourism destination.
US travel website When On Earth has listed Ho Chi Minh City among the ideal cities worldwide for vegans and vegetarians.
Located only 90 minutes from Hanoi, Emeralda Resort Ninh Binh has boasting the charming beauty that never fails to impress holiday makers which is definitely a desire destination for corporate summer getaway.
Made from simple ingredients including rice flour and fresh shrimp, Vac cake in Hoi An is one of the best Vietnamese street foods visitors should not miss.
Located in the northern mountainous province of Lao Cai, Sapa hides in its many beautiful natural wonders of terraces mingling with green trees.
Along with Ha Long and Nha Trang, Lang Co (Thua Thien - Hue) has officially become one of the most beautiful bays in the world. The ceremony took place to certificate the bay in the Setubal City - Portugal, within the framework of the fifth summit theme "Oceans connect us”.
International travel portal Touropia introduces more than 60 hotels in Sapa, considered as one of the most fascinating tourist destinations in Vietnam, attracting thousands of visitors each year.
There are various dishes made with goat meat such as stir-fried goat meat , steamed goat meat, grilled goat brisket, goat hotpot, rare goat meat mixed with lemon . Each of them has its own unforgettable taste but among those dishes rare-goat meat in Hoa Lu is considered is the most delicious one.
A list of most popular local foods that should not be missed in Hanoi, take a look and find out what are they..
Dried buffalo is special food in the meals of Black Thai. This meat is usually made from muscle of buffaloes and cows freely on the northwest mountains.
Located not far from Hoa Lu ancient capital of Vietnam, Kenh Ga Floating Village is known as one of the most rural areas in the Red River Delta. The village s a remarkable place where tourists in Vietnam travel can see its inhabitants’ life on the river with their own eyes.
Vung Vieng fishing village is located in the northeast of Ha Long Bay and is home to more than 62 households. People’s living conditions have improved through tourism and Vung Vieng promises to become one of the bay’s most popular tourist destinations.
Enjoying crispy fried spring fish or tasting local mustard is unforgettable impression of Sapa cuisine.
The Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism issued Official dispatch No. 2286/BVHTTDL-DSVH on June 9th, 2015 which was sent to the Government Office on establishing of Du Gia National Park - Dong Van Stone Plateau, Ha Giang province.
Cha Ca La Vong, Bun Cha Hang Manh, Banh Duc Le Ngoc Han and Banh Cuon Hang Ga are just a few of the well-known dishes in Ha Noi’s Old Quarter district.
Nestled in a beautiful valley about three kilometers from Sapa Town, Cat Cat- the old village of ethnic groups- attracts tourists from all over the world for its distinctive customs and practices which have been lost in almost ethnic villages.
Whenever visiting any tourism destination in any country in the world, most travelers spend a considerable amount of time exploring and enjoying the wild wonders of cuisines there.
Hanoi has recently been included on TripAdvisor's list of best destinations in the world for the first time.
In the journey of discovering Ha Tien town and Hai Tac Islands in Kien Giang, apart from being impressed with the breath-taking landscape, I also got wowed by the first time eating the traditional Ca Xiu dish. The dish is exclusive only in Ha Tien Town.
The ingredients for making banh rom include sticky rice flour, pork, green beans and green banana leaves. To turn out a fragrant, sticky and mouth-watering cake, makers are required to have skills. It's very popular in Vietnam and this rustic flavor of banh rom made a flutter to many people.
Travelling to Hue, visitors not only enjoy the stunning view of the Huong River but also have chance to enjoy one of the best Vietnamese foods there. It is well known as Com Hen Song Huong (Mussel Rice in Huong River). It is very popular everywhere in Hue and these days, elsewhere in Hue restaurants in Viet Nam.
In cold weather, the visitors can enjoy a dish of sweet and sour grated papaya salad. The salad mixed with beef is a simple nosh sold in small alleys and markets in Ha Noi. In the past, there were a few stands selling this dish. Later on, more stands appeared and this dish is now popularly sold.
The central coastal province of Binh Dinh is renowned for a wide selection of food and drink specialties, including Bau Da rice liquor, nem (fermented pork roll), cha (ground meat), tre (minced pork wrapped in guava and banana leaves) and hong (pink) cake.
The number of international tourist arrivals to Ha Noi reached 3 million in 2014, up 16 percent against the previous year and 200,000 people more than the yearly target, according to the municipal Department of Culture, Sports and Tourism.
In Viet Nam, the end of year is a holiday season. Below are the suggested locations for tourists who intend to go on a tour on this occasion. Coming to these destinations, visitors will be immersed in the beauty of nature and delight in exploring the unique cultural activities.
TripAdvisor, the world’s largest travel website, has named the central coastal city of Da Nang as a top destination on the rise in Asia and the world. Danang has a wide range of peaceful and beautiful natural landscapes that are great endorsements from travellers around the world.
Ha Long Bay and the Son Doong cave have been named among the top 10 of the most breathtakingly beautiful places to visit on the planet by the global travel website GlobalGrasshopper. Ha Long Bay and the Son Doong Cave is evidence of the world’s beauty, inside and out, the website said.
Viet Nam welcomes its victory in the coveted ‘top value for world travel’ category of the Telegraph Travel Awards 2014, the world’s biggest reader travel awards. The winning of a prestigious award like this is a great accolade for the country and bodes well for the tourism industry.
Conde Nast Traveler, one of the world's premier luxury and lifestyle travel magazines, has cited three famous resorts in Viet Nam’s central region as top 40 of World's Best Beach Resorts: Readers' Choice 2014. It is encouraging to see that Viet Nam has found its place in regional and world top lists.
The Vinpearl Phu Quoc Resort which was debuted earlier last month by Vingroup is a new destination for those who wish to have a great escape to Phu Quoc Island off Kien Giang Province. From the resort, it is convenient for tourists to explore other famous sightseeing spots on the island.
Besides tours of popular tourist destinations, travelers can plan their own trips depending on flower seasons. A flower sightseeing tour is unlike a normal package tour. Maybe a new flowering season is different from previous ones since each flower has its own beauty and charm for those who love flowers.
Da Lat, city of flowers, has offered unique entertainment farming and agri-tourism to visitors, attracting more and more tourists to the city. With the friendly production model, the gardens not only bring economic benefits to growers but also contribute to tourism development in the province.
Traditional costumes of the Vietnamese people tend to be very simple and modest. Men wear brown shirts and white trousers. Their headgear is simply a piece of cloth wrapped around the head and their footwear consists of a pair of plain sandals.
Lung Van (Muong Bi), about 40km from downtown Hoa Binh City, is famous for its spectacular natural scenery and the unique culture of the Muong people. Lung Van is really an ideal place for those who want to escape the noisy urban life and discover the unique cultural features of the Muong ethnic people.
HALONG hotels RECOMMENDED
Halong Royal Lotus hotel
Halong Muong Thanh hotel
Saigon Halong hotel
Halong Novotel hotel
Halong Mithrin hotel
Halong BMC hotel
Morning Star Tuan Chau hotel
Hidden charm Tuan Chau hotel
Halong Dream hotel
Halong Asean Hotel
Halong Pearl Hotel
Halong Grand Hotel
Best price guarantee
No booking fees
Your privacy is protected
Booking is safe
No cancellation fees