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Sunday, October 2, 2022

An Lac-style steamed thin rice pancake

By Ngoc Khanh

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The specialty from An Lac Village, Dong Giang Ward, Dong Ha City, Quang Tri Province, wins the heart of food lovers due to tasty flavors and vivid colors of its ingredients

The delicious flavors of banh uot An Lac, or An Lac-style steamed thin rice pancake, come from fresh ingredients including rice, shrimp, pork and herbs, and the way of making.

Steamed thin rice pancakes are indispensable. To have perfect rice pancakes which should be soft and chewy at the same time, the local cook chooses chewy, scented rice. The rice is soaked in water before being ground into a white liquid. The cook then puts the liquid on a linen steamer base and waits for several minutes before plucking the pancakes off the linen steamer base. During making the pancakes, he or she has to try to prevent them from sticking together.

Slices of pork served with these rice pancakes are a special feature of the dish. Diners can opt for boiled pork or grilled pork. But the grilled pork is preferred. The slices of pork are marinated in lemon grasses, gingers and some basic spices that offer a very good smell to them when they are grilled on hot coals.

However, the soul of the specialty is the dipping sauce. The mixture comprises ground shrimp and pork, fish sauce and sautés garlic. An owner of the 100-year-old eatery selling An Lac-style steamed thin rice pancakes says the dipping sauce decides how delicious the dish is and it is founded in An Lac Village only.

It is time to enjoy the specialty. Diners roll a rice pancake with some herbs, green chilies, dip the roll in the special dipping sauce and enjoy. When eating the An Lac-style steamed thin rice pancakes, they immediately feel all the flavors of the dish working in harmony.

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