Why Banh Xeo (Pancake) is special
Pancake are Vietnamese savoury pancakes made out of rice flour, water, turmeric powder, stuffed with slivers of fatty pork, shrimp, and bean sprouts and then pan fried. Traditionally, they are served wrapped in mustard leaf, lettuce leaves, and stuffed with mint leaves, basil, fish leaf and/or other herbs, and dipped in a prepared nuoc cham (Vietnamese fish sauce thinned with water and lemon). In the Central region, the pancake is dipped in a special ‘tuong’ sauce which consists of liver, hoisin sauce and garlic.
It is absolutely delicious and “edible” to anyone. The sauce doesn’t include any special “nuoc mam” (fish sauce) so don’t worry if you can’t stand nuoc mam’s smell. In fact, the sauce is the key element which separates good and not so good Pancake, and makes Banh xeo in Da Nang unique and different from those in other cities.
Whenever mention about Banh Xeo, it is hard to not to talk about Nem Lui and Bun Thit Nuong. Nem Lui and Bun Thit Nuong can be served all season but it is best to enjoy with Banh Xeo. After some wrapped with mostly vegetable, Nem Lui will provide protein while Bun Thit Nuong will help fill up the rest of your belly.
Nem Lui is a kind of sausage. Pork is marinated then wrapped around a chopstick with a size of two fingers. After that, grill it slowly above charcoal fire until it turns gold, then, it is ready to serve. Nem Lui can be eat with the same way as Banh Xeo or just simply dip it into the sauce and enjoy.
Bun Thit Nuong or so called Rice noodle with grilled meat. Vietnamese cold rice vermicelli noodle dish is topped with grilled pork, fresh herbs like basil and mint, fresh salad and bean sprouts. In Da Nang, The dish is dressed in special sauce. The same kind of sauce that use for Banh Xeo and Nem Lui but much dense than that. Also, the dish is topped with roasted peanuts, Vietnamese pickled carrots. Just siply mix all the ingredients together and enjoy.
It is normal to have all three dishes together in one meal so that you can have more energy in a winter day. Especially after 17h00 (after working hour), you can see people rushing out of the offices or schools, go straight to a nearby restaurant to avoid the heavy rain and enjoy the warm, hearty dishes..
Where to eat Banh Xeo (Pancake)
- Banh xeo Ba Duong (Madam Duong’s pancake): K280/23, Hoang Dieu Street, Hai Chau District, Da Nang City
- Banh xeo Co Muoi: 23 Chau Thi Vinh Te Street, Ngu Hanh Son District, Da Nang City
- Am thuc Xeo: 75 Hoang Van Thu Street, Hai Chau District, Da Nang City
- Banh xeo Nam Hien: 17 Tan Da Street, Thanh Khe District, Da Nang City