Ca Mau (Cà Mau) is located in the Mekong Delta of southern Vietnam, and is the southernmost of Vietnam’s 58 provinces. The province is also the home of the famous U Minh Ha forest. In the end of Vietnam, the culinary in the area is very similar to its extraordinary neighbors yet there are more to be tried. Voles fried with chili, fried perch ruffled, Tam buns, skin noodles packaging … are delicacy that must be discovered in the culinary map for tourists visiting the Cape.
Ca Mau rich cuisines, typical of the river with the food always captivate visitors.
1. Voles fried with chili
Before you shout out “No way”, it is one common dish that you can find in most of the Mekong Delta is voles or hamster. It is a very rural yet amazing dish that you will never forget. Among recipes to make the cuisine, fried voles with hot chili is one of the most common.
(In the middle of Southern U Minh forest (U Minh Hạ), you can enjoy the amazing flavors of fried voles with the price of 90,000 dong)
In order to fry them, the voles will be cleaned and seasoned by the professionals, and then they will be fried in big fire while the chef will not stop stirring until the voles are yellow and soaked with the seasonings.
2. Ruffled-fried perch
(The crispy fried fish is eaten with paper rice, wild vegetables and herbs, dipped with ginger fish sauce)
The perch is cleaned and fried as a whole in very hot pan with a lot of oil. The next stage is to bring the fish out of the frying pan and allow the oil to be removed from the fish. The crispy fried fish is eaten with paper rice, wild vegetables and herbs, dipped with ginger fish sauce. You can find this wonderful dish in the cafeteria of the U Minh national forest reservation center. A dish of deep-fried perch is cost about 90,000 dong.
3. Eels and cilantro
(Eels served with cilantro are very tasty)
The eels are cleaned, and then are cut into three different pieces. Like many Mekong Delta cuisines, coconut milk is an indispensable ingredient. The eels are cooked with special spices and fresh coconut milk to enrich the flavor and the fatness of the eels are being cooked. Eating with the eels are herbs, and the most common one is cilantro. A pot of fresh and hot eels in the middle of U Minh will cost roughly 160,000 dong.
4. Silkworm Cake and chicken curry
(A plate of Silkworm Cake costs about 20,000 dong in the 2nd Ward in Ca Mau markets)
A juicy and fat plate of silkworm cake will followed you anywhere you go in the southern provinces of Vietnam. The cake is made out of rice flour and the indispensable coconut milk. People in Ca Mau usually combine the cake with the chicken curry to distinguish this special dish with other regions. The cake is usually watered with the curry soup and eaten with herbs and vegetables.
5. Pork skin noodles
(The fresh noodles are made greater in size than other types of noodle. This special noodle then is combined with pork, pork’s skin and Vietnamese’s special pork bologna)
A plate of skin noodle will cost 25,000 dong at Huynh Long Restaurant. One of the most favorite features of skin noodle is that the cuisine is light in flavor, so it will not jam you with tons of flavor. It is usually served as appetizer.
6. Broken rice with poached shrimp, fried ribs
(The dish costs about 20,000 dong at joints along Bui Thi Xuan Street)
This is the dish that you can have for breakfast, lunch and also dinner without getting tired of it. It is that good! The special broken rice is the key to the wonder of this cuisine. As a very common dish in Vietnam, broken rice, unlike the common rice, is smaller. There is a long list of food that can eat along with the broken rice. However, the most common one is fried ribs. In Ca Mau, the dish is also served with shrimps because here, the shrimps are said to be the best. A dish of broken rice with poached shrimp and fried ribs will mesmerized you wherever you go.
7. Silkworm cake with chopped pork and fried plate tofu
(The dish should be eaten with sauce)
The meat is finely chopped and seasoned to enrich the flavors. The tofu is flattened and then fried in small fire. The meat is rolled inside the tofu and both are steamed. A dish of silkworm cake with chopped pork and fried plate tofu is cost about 25,000 dong in many restaurants along the Bui Thi Xuan Street.
8. Stone crab fried with salt
(You can enjoy the salty fried stone crab in restaurants under Ganh Hao Bridge (Cầu Gành Hào)
Stone crab has very sturdy meat, so you can eat it slowly and enjoy the taste of it. A price for 1kg of stone crab is about 150,000 for average six crabs
9. Dog-salmon steamed with green pepper and onions
(Dog-salmon is also known as little shark)
Firstly, the fish will be cleaned, and then steamed with green pepper, cilantro, onions, and its special sauce. A price for 1kg of “little shark” is about 250,000 (an average shark weights 700gram.) You can find this dish in restaurants under Ganh Hao Bridge.
10. Mudskippers roasted with salt and peppers
Mudskippers are a characteristic fish of the mangrove areas. Not only jump out of the mud, the people here also named it tree-climbing fish. This type of fish has a peculiar shape, yet its meat is sweet and soft.
(Mudskippers can be cooked into various delicious dishes but the best is the grilled mudskippers.)
The mudskippers don’t have fat in it, so in order to keep the moisture of the dish, a thin layer of oil is usually painted outside of the fish’s skin. The locals usually use coals to grill the fish so that the fish has a natural smell. Tourists can enjoy the tasty dish of mudskippers in ecotourism resort Cape Land (Đất Mũi.)