For people who have dug a bit deeper into the flavours of what Vietnamese food have to offer and past the typical Pho and Banh Mi, you’ll discover that it’s like an iceberg and there’s about a LOT more to discover, and still remaining around the top of the iceberg was Bún riêu – a vermicelli noodle soup which the soup base is made from tomato and crab – Ms. Buddha and I decided to try this at Bún Riêu Nguyễn Cảnh Chân.
The way they make the soup with the crab is that they first clean it (obviously – and thank goodness) and then crush the crab till they become a paste, the juice is used for the soup base while the paste is used for crab cakes etc.
The shop itself is next to a main road but not close to anything touristy, there were still a lot of people though.
Be warned and prepared that the staff, although incredibly friendly and accommodating, do not speak a word of English – to order, I first pointed, then pronounced Bún riêu in the most incorrect way possible – then pointed at a pad with some random English words. In the end, they just nodded and we sat down, they also served up the condiments which to me meant that I’ve at least ordered something!
Given my lack of knowledge of what we ordered (I had to reorder again about 4 mins into Ms. Buddha eating the first bowl because nothing came for me) – all I can understand is we ordered a regular Bún riêu and a deluxe Bún riêu because both had the same soup base, but mine had more things in it.
That said, Ms Buddha absolutely loved the soup base and the mixture of the tomato and seafood flavour was just mind blowing! The bowl also came with a good dose of the crab paste – make sure you first have a decent taste….then also mix it with the soup!
For those who want to try something other than Pho, Bún riêu is a good option – it allows you to try something less available in the West whilst still not too intimidating! The only thing that Ms. Buddha and I were amazed by is that under 30+ degree celsius humid heat – none of the other customers sweat…