Mekong Pop Rice

Pop rice is a typical puffed rice dessert from the Mekong Delta region of Vietnam. A decades-old process is used to make this crunchy puffed rice. Rice grains with their husks intact are poured into a huge kettle that has previously been filled with Mekong River black sand.

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The rice puffs and pops when the mixture is agitated over a fire, and it is then filtered twice through a mesh to remove the black sand and leftover husks. The crispy rice is then combined with a syrup made of sugar and water in another wok-shaped pot.

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The syrup can be flavored with a variety of ingredients, including coconut milk, green tea, caramel, peanuts, and ginger. Before being eaten or sold to hungry clients, the rice and syrup combination are flattened with a rolling pin and cut into squares while still hot.

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