This is one way to get lunch in Vietnam. Bao on the road, where it’s prepared and sold on the motorbike. The epitome of street food, where the street brings the food to you.
I LOVE the fact that they’re riding around with an active wood burning stove on the back of their motorbike. That’s just so Vietnam. They’ll put anything on a motorbike.
This giant dumpling sandwich, banh bao, was very tasty with a peppery kick. It had mushrooms, carrot, a bit of ground meat and quail eggs. This is a common mixture for these types of dumplings. The ones you buy from the back of motorbikes I suspect are homemade with each having their own special recipe. The second time I had these, they weren’t quite as spicy as the first.
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You can here these vendors coming from quite a distance, they all have the same recording that blasts down the alleys and through the streets. I see them most between 4-7pm in our neighborhood, but I’ve heard them out as late as 11pm. Tim and I joke that they sound like an Imperial Probe Droid, and that’s what we call them, even tough they’re much more welcome in the neighborhood.
Never be afraid to try street food, you might miss out. These vendors sell mostly to locals and if the food wasn’t good, or made people sick, they wouldn’t stay in business for very long.
In fact, when you talk to regular travelers, if they have a bad food (like food poisoning) story, it’s always from a ‘proper’ place that, ‘shouldn’t have been a problem’. Street food is rarely the culprit in traveler’s stories.
There are quite a few motorbike meals around and I’m on a mission to try all the different ones I can find. The only difficulty is trying to catch them before I’ve had a regular meal.
Then there’s the case of the little old lady selling steamed corn cobs from her motorbike. I was sitting in front of a restaurant waiting for my take-away order and she still convinced me to buy corn on the cob from her. What can I say, I’m a sucker for little old ladies selling things.