Vespa adventure

Last night we went on a food tour of Hoi An on the back of scooters with Vespa Adventures. It was a lot of fun although weaving through the traffic was a bit hair-raising. I found it best to look into the shops and restaurants we passed rather than ahead at the frenetic onslaught of cars, motorbikes and bicycles.

If you examine the photo above you will see that Bernd’s helmet was comically too small for him. He’s now got a bruise on his forehead.

We sampled traditional Hoi An food at 5 locations, from street food stalls to restaurants. Our guides took photos of us continually throughout, which was fortunate. I don’t know about you, but I’m at my most photogenic eating unfamiliar foods in the heat, perched on a plastic stool 6 inches off the ground.

Some of the things we ate:

  • Bánh Căn Trứng Cút – rice flour and turmeric pancakes filled with egg, served with pork sausage, grated papaya salad, assorted herbs and fish sauce
  • White rose dumplings – made from rice dough with shrimp paste inserted into the middle, shaped like white flowers, steamed then served with fish sauce and fried shallots
  • Thịt Nướng – marinated pork pieces cooked over hot coals on split bamboo chopsticks, served alongside mint, mixed herbs and cucumber and dipped into a fish sauce vinaigrette
  • Bò nhúng dấm – thin slices of beef cooked communally in a hot pot of stock, onions, vinegar, tomatoes and pineapple. Once ready, diners prepare their own fresh spring rolls with rice paper and the abundance of mixed herbs and lettuce then dip, as always, in fish sauce
  • Bánh flan – the Vietnamese version of creme caramel with a coffee sauce

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