Don’t be just amazed by the breath-taking scenery in Phu Quoc, the cuisine in here is a promising treasure too! In Vietnamese, we have a proverb: “Có thực mới vực được đạo” or “A hungry belly has no ears.” You won’t feel all the beauty of this island without trying these iconic dishes listed below.
- Bún Quậy (Stirring Rice Noodles) – A light dish, good for breakfast, or light lunch and dinner.
Stirring Rice Noodles
The name “Bún Quậy” comes from the stirring process in order to have a perfect bowl. Before eating Bún Quậy, you have to make the dipping sauce by your own and stir the ingredients well enough to make it turn to red orange. The rice noodle, main ingredient, is served in hot broth and seafood. Dip the noodle with the topping into the sauce and enjoy the best taste ever.
All ingredients are fresh; the straight-from-the-kitchen rice noodle, the seafood, fish cake, shrimp cake, herb, etc.; together they make a dish with natural aroma and sweetness. And the taste becomes perfect when you dip these things from the bowl into your made sauce. It’s completely distinctive!
- Nấm Tràm (Melaleuca Mushroom)
Most people don’t want their vacation to be ruined by the rain, but if you are coming to Phu Quoc in rainy season, especially after the first rain, it will be a gift. You will have a chance to see and try very fresh, delicious and special mushrooms of this beautiful island. The mushroom are wildly and naturally blooming up only in rainy season and last for around 1 month. They mostly appear in the melaleuca forest of Phu Quoc and so the locals call them Nấm Tràm (or Melaleuca Mushroom).
In the season of melaleuca mushrooms, if you can see them in wild, you will see their colors are very diverse. Sometimes it is mysterious purple, sometimes it is light yellow or brown, with milky white edge.
The locals loves to make dishes with Nấm Tràm thanks to its richness in vitamins as well as its distinct taste, slightly bitter; a little bit creamy; and sweet later on. Nấm Tràm can be served best when they are fresh and in many kinds like in soup, hot pot, porridge or stir-fried meal. So, if coming to Phu Quoc in rainy season, don’t for get to ask to add Nấm Tràm to your dish and try!
- Bánh Canh Chả Cá Thu – (Fish cake thick rice noodles soup with mackerel)
Fish cake thick rice noodles soup with mackerel
Thick noodle soup with fish cake is one of the popular food in Vietnam. But if you try this dish with mackerel fish cake, it will be over expectation. The dish is prepared with chewy thick rice noodles, sweet broth, savory mackerel flesh with tasty mackerel fish cake flavored with spicy pepper and lime. Surely it will make you love it at the very first bite. In Phu Quoc, the taste of the dish is even more special. The mackerel flesh, the soul of the soup, is carefully selected to make sure it can bring the soup the sweetness and the natural fresh that it needs.
- Gỏi Cá Trích Phú Quốc (Phu Quoc Fresh Herring Salad)
Phu Quoc Fresh Herring Salad
People in Phu Quoc call them salad, but the way to eat this is almost like what we do with summer rolls. It’s a combination of shredded coconut, sliced raw herring, pounded roast peanuts, spearmint, onion and a little lime juice. We will wrap this mixture with fresh vegetables in rice paper and dip it into its own prepared special sauce before enjoying it. It’s spicy, a little sour but so yummy. This will be a perfect dish during lunch or dinner for the “strong-tummy” foodies.