Banh Mi Saigon (Sandwich of Saigon)

Due to the baking utensils and technique, the baguette has been called "Banh Mi" in Saigon (Ho Chi Minh City) and Vietnam as well since its introduction during the French colonization. It has a lighter crumb and a crispier crust than the French baguette.

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Banh Mi can be found practically every place in Ho Chi Minh City (Saigon), and it is a must-try while you're there. Typically, the bread is baked until it is hot and crispy, then packed with spices, butter, meat, sauce, and veggies (cucumber, cilantro, scallion). Boiled sausages (cha lua), grilled pork loin (thit nuong), roasted pork belly (heo quay), meatballs (xiu mai), fried fish with turmeric and dill (cha ca), boiled chicken (thit ga), fried egg (trung op la), and Chinese barbecued pork loin (thit nuong) are some of the meat fillings available for banh mi (xa xiu). A loaf of bread typically costs between 0.5 and 1.5 dollars.

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Apart from being a delicious and convenient lunch in Saigon, plain Banh Mi combined with sweetness makes for a simple yet intriguing snack. Whereas in Europe, bread is typically spread with butter and fruit jam, Banh Mi Saigon has long been known to be compatible with condensed milk.

Banh Mi is torn into small pieces and then dipped in condensed milk to make "bánh mì chấm sữa", a creamy sweet dessert. Banh Mi, along with Pho (noodle soup), Bun (rice vermicelli), Xoi (sticky rice), and many other traditional Saigonese meals, should be on any visitor's must-try food list.

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Leading Banh Mi Saigon eateries in Ho Chi Minh City (HCMC):

Banh Mi Ba Huynh – 55 Road 4, Ward 4, District 3, HCMC
Banh Mi Chao – 08 Dang Tran Con street, Ben Thanh ward, District 1, HCMC
Banh Mi Bay Ho – 19 Huynh Khuong Ninh street, Da Kao ward, District 1, HCMC
Banh Mi Hong Hoa – 54 Nguyen Van Trang, Pham Ngu Lao ward, District 1, HCMC
Banh Mi Huynh Hoa – 26 Le Thi Rieng street, Pham Ngu Lao ward, District 1, HCMC

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