“Banh canh”, a specialty in Danang, literally means “cake” (noodles made from wheat or rice flour) and “soup”. There’re many types of banh canh, so which is your favourite? “Cha ca” and meat on the bone? Or crab and snakehead fish? Hmm it’s so hard to choose as they’re all delicious. I’d order a combination bowl with everything.
Let’s begin the delight! Firstly squeeze a little lemon juice into the bowl, then add a tablespoon of chili sauce… the sweetness of the fish, crab or “chả cá” already tickles the tongue. Oh and don’t forget, dip a stick of the hot yellow fried bread into the soup, into the mouth, nom nom nom, it’s heaven!
My favourite banh canh shop is at 142 Huynh Thuc Khang which is open from 2pm everyday. This stall serves banh canh with meat on the bone, fish cake and/or shrimp.
How it can be served
Banh canh in Da Nang has its own distinctive taste. The noodles are usually made from rice flour, wheat flour or rice starch, unlike other localities in the south where noodles are made from tapioca starch and are circular in shape like “bún” noodles. During the subsidy regime time in Vietnam, officials and state employees were often sold wheat flour so every household would self-make banh canh at home.
I’d knead flour with water, roll the dough flat and cut into thin long noodle strips. I’d then buy a couple of croaking gourami or flying fish at the market, boil and remove the bones, simmer with curcuma and “củ nén”. Pour water into a pot, add in the fish broth, boil the noodles, add in the fish, then a hot tasty pot of banh canh was ready for the whole family to enjoy