Vietnam Food Exploration: Bo Bia Ngot

The first night we were in Hanoi there was the Friday night street market in the Old Quarter. This meant, among other things, a lot of food stalls.

We meandered from place to place, sampling different bits and pieces, but I was drawn to a bicycle with a box on the back where an interesting looking dessert was being created.

bo bia ngot

As you can see, there are some thin pancakes having super-shiny sticks laid onto them. They may look like plastic, but they are in fact pulled sugar. Very light and sweet, crisper than candyfloss but that is what it reminds me of most. To this is added freshly grated coconut and a sprinkle of black sesame seeds. It is all rolled up and handed across to you for about 20p.

Such a delicious combination! Creamy fresh shreds of coconut, melting sugar and a light crepe. I’ve looked for the sugar online in vain, but it doesn’t help that I don’t know what it is called!

You will see bo bia ngot bicycles touring round Hanoi, and when you do, stop them and buy one. Or five.

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