A Quang Nam specialty to the world


(QNO) - Cao Lau, a specialty of Hoi An city (Quang Nam province) is a famous delicious dish not only in Vietnam but all over the world.

Cao Lau in Hoi An.
Cao Lau in Hoi An.

At first glance, Cao Lau looks like noodles. It is thought to come from China but the Chinese Vietnamese do not recognize it. It is also said to be similar to Japanese udon noodles but different in flavor and texture.

The essence of Cao Lau is noodles that are processed meticulously. Firstly, fragrant rice is soaked in ash water. Ash results from wood taken from Cham Islands, 16 km away from Hoi An. Rice after soaking  is ground into powder with water from the Cham well called Ba Le. The rice powder is continuously made supple and dry, rolled into pieces, chopped into strands, steamed several times, then dried to make noodles. So Cao Lau noodles never stinks

Cao Lau is served with simmer pork, green bean sprouts quickly dipped in boiled water and raw vegetables from Tra Que vegetable village. Pork is also special when it comes from a local species of pig. So the flavor of Cao Lau is rather unique with 5 different tastes (sour, sweet, bitter, acrid, and spicy) and the smells of fish and soy sauces.

Cao Lau now appears in some other places beyond Hoi An but it doesn’t seem as appetizing as it is in Hoi An. It is said that the water of Ba Le well, the wood ash from Cham islands and Tra Que vegetables make the dish typical.

Another characteristic of Cao Lau is that it is served upstairs. The way of service may result in its name “Cao Lau”. At this position, people enjoying Cao Lau can contemplate the beauty of Hoi An from the height.

Crossing the Vietnamese border, Cao Lau goes to France, England, and Australia among others. However, Cao Lau enjoyed in Hoi An still appears to be more delicious.