Savory Vietnamese Dishes – A Look Into The “Bun” Family (Part Two)

Following the last entry, us Saigon Food Tour is going to introduce you to more of the “Bun” family. But this time, these bowls of “Bun” will be more different and they are not so well-known by travellers as well.

3. Bún thịt nướng ( Chargrilled pork patties with herbs vermicelli )

I know we all like our meals hot and spicy, but isn’t it good to change once in a while? Bun Thit Nuong is served dry and cool, so that is no soup at all. While Bun Bo Hue and Bun Rieu own its unique flavor for their stock, Bun Thit Nuong is remembered for its sauce.


Bun Thit Nuong is nutritious for all of its ingredients.

Fresh rice vermicelli is used to make this dish. Apart from that, we also serve Chả giò ( Fried spring rolls ), chargrilled marinated pork, sausages (including shrimp sausage, pork sausage, etc.).

Chả giò (fried spring rolls) is varied. However, they are basically taro, meat, shrimp, mushrooms, seasonings, etc. rolled in a piece of rice paper. These rolls are then deep fried until golden brown.


These babies rock Bun Thit Nuong !

As I mentioned, the fish sauce served with Bun Thit Nuong is very special. Fish sauce is cooked and seasoned until it has a savory yet sweet and slightly sour flavor. Doesn’t that sound awesome?

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Nước mắm (fish sauce) that accompanies Bun Thit Nuong sometimes has finely chopped carrot and radish inside of it.


Thai basil, lettuce, cucumber, radish, carrot, bean sprouts all finely chopped before they are served.

4. Bún đậu mắm tôm ( Fermented shrimp paste with fried tofu and rice vermicelli)

Bún đậu mắm tôm is a popular dish in Northern Vietnam, and it originated there. “Bún” stands for rice vermicelli. “Đậu” stands for tofu (the exact Viet word for tofu is đậu hũ, but we call it đậu for short). “Mắm tôm” means shrimp paste.


Shrimp paste is the highlight of this dish

Bun Dau Mam Tom is usually served in a big plate with all the ingredients on it. You will find rice vermicelli, deep fried tofu, chả cốm (fried mixed shrimp, pork and green rice flakes sausage), meat, herbs in this dish. Most of these ingredients, tasty as they seem, they cannot fully covers the dish. This is where the shrimp paste kicks in.


Making the shrimp paste is a long story from choosing the best shrimps to ferment, adding proportional amount of the herbs and salt to the mixture and perfect timing. After having your original strong shrimp paste, take some of it and add sugar, lime juice, chilli till it foams up to a beautiful sauce, adjust to taste.

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Tofu is cut into small pieces any way you like, then deep fried.


Chả cốm (fried mixed shrimp, pork and green rice flakes sausage) is a true masterpiece as it contains all the ingredients you never thought they can go together. Chả cốm is deep fried before served.


Vietnamese love veggies! We eat vegetable with every dish we have 😉 With Bun Dau Mam Tom, we got cucumber, Thai basil, purple perilla, cilantro.