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Com Vong special dish of autumn in Hanoi cuisine

Thu, 12 Mar 2015 . Last updated Thu, 25 Jun 2015 09:01

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Com of Vong village is perhaps the most special snack in Hanoi cuisine. Dishes from “com” are always loved by Vietnamese and foreign diners and contribute to diversifying Vietnamese cuisine.

The melodies of the song “Miss Hanoi’s Autumn” by late musician Trinh Cong Son are no longer strange to those who love Hanoi, Hanoi in autumn is so impressive with solemn houses and fragrance of milk flowers and of “com” (young sticky rice), a specialty of Vong village. “Com” is found not only in Vong village (Lang Vong green sticky rice), Hanoi. However, perhaps the elegant taste of this kind of snack can be found nowhere else. “Com” of Vong village is considered a cultural feature of the millennial capital city. And “Com Vong” has become a familiar specialty of Hanoi whenever autumn comes.

Perhaps everyone in Hanoi has enjoyed “Com Vong” once in their lie or head about it because it is a unique specialty of the capital city. In autumn, those who love Hanoi and “com” of Vong village often come to Xuan Thuy Street to enjoy the most special snack of the capital city. The most impressive images in this street are perhaps the images of women with baskets selling “com” here. The images have been in the minds of Hanoians and those who love Hanoi in general.

 “Com” of Vong village is flat and has the green of sticky rice grains which have just started being filled with the milky liquid. There are two seasons of “com” every year: The first one lasts for only one month. It’s not the main season, so the rice grains are not delicious. The second one, the main season of “com” starts from July to October. It’s time of autumn. The graft of making “com” is quite demanding 10 days before the harvest day; Vong villagers often choose longest ears of rice with plump grains to make “com”.

To have a nice batch of “com”, farmers should harvest the rice at the right time when the grains are no longer green, hard or break. If the grains are too young, they will be stuck to the husks, making “com” tasteless. “Com” should be within the day when the rice is reaped. The hardest step is frying rice grains so that the husks can be removed when the grains have not become crispy. Then the grains are ground gently with a special kind of mortal until they become sticky and smooth. After grinding the grains for 10 times, they start sieving. The flavor of “com” depends on the kind of sticky rice and the secrets of each maker.

 “Com” is enjoyed in a very elegant way. “Com” is wrapped in two layers of leaf. The inner layer helps keep the food sticky and green. The outside layer “lotus leaf” makes it sweet smelling. No one knows why people use lotus leaf to wrap “com”. Perhaps the snack must be wrapped with leaves of the pure flower to show its meaning. “Com” is often served with fully ripe banana and especially persimmon. Skillful women also stir-fry “com” make sticky rice with “com”, grilled chopped meat with “com” and sweetened porridge with “com”. Delicious dishes made from “com vong” made by these women are always appreciated by diners.

There are different ways to make spring rolls with “com”. We can wrap “com”, pork paste and grease in a lotus leaf and steam the mixture before frying it, or directly fry the mixture of “com”, chopped meat and pork paste. Despite the different recipes, the dishes all have the fragrance and stickiness of “com” and the greasiness of the meat. It is interesting to enjoy the dish in the slightly cold autumn.

 “Com” used for the dish should be a bit old. We do not need onion for the dish because onion will reduce the flavor of “com Vong”. After taking the rolls out of the pan, we should cover them in a lotus leaf to make them more fragrant and delicious. The green and the butteriness of “com” will surprise diners who have been familiar to spring rolls. The dish with the sweetness and the fragrance of “Com” and the greasiness of coconut is very good for diners’ health. It is nutritious and good for digestion because “com” and coconut meat are rich in fibre, vitamins, essential oil and minerals. The two ingredients also contain much saturated fat and give dinners enough energy.

You will never forget the taste of tofu fried with “com” once enjoying it. “Com” grains, which are crispy outside and fragrant and sticky inside and tofu together create both familiar and strange flavors.

Shrimp fried with “com” is a delicious and nutritious dish. Its recipe is simple as well. Remove the shells of the shrimps. Keep their heads and tails. Dip the shrimps in a seasoned rice flour mixture before covering them with “com”. Heat some cooking oil and put the shrimps in. When they turn yellow, take them out to a dish. You can dip the shrimps in a mixture of soup base, pepper, lemon juice and chilli. Shrimp fried with “com” tastes strange, delicious. The dish is a good choice for a weekend get together of friends and family members.


Source: VTC10 - NETVIET

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