Have you ever eaten Snails in Vietnam?

Have you ever eaten Snails in Vietnam?

If you ask Vietnamese people which special food you should try in Vietnam, they will recommend you to try snails. Especially, if you travel to Saigon, there are a great number of snail restaurants.

There seems to be a consensus that Vietnamese snail feast is one of the special meals in Vietnam. Vietnamese people love eating snails because they are delicious and fresh that Vietnamese people can share with their friends and family.

Eating snails and drinking beer become a cultural lifestyle that they can eat either at lunchtime or dinnertime. I remembered when I was in Vietnam, my coworker took me to a snail restaurant for lunch. Honestly, I am so surprised when the waitress told me that I should try the snails with bread. Actually, this combination is not only too delicious but also makes me feel full sooner than normal.

No matter where Vietnamese people live, we still love eating snails; therefore, you can find some snail restaurants at Vietnam town in San Jose or Orange County.

There are a variety of snails that come from Vietnam’s freshwater sources – flooded rice paddies, rivers and lakes – and from the ocean. People cook those snails in many ways with various flavors.

There are five different ways to cook snails such as fried, steamed, sauteed, grilled, coated in chili and salt. In order to make an order, you should figure out which ways you prefer. Moreover, each of snails come with a variety of toppings: lemongrass, coconut milk, chili sauce and crushed peanuts.that you get many options to add in.

Additionally, in order to enhance the taste of snails, you should try snails with chili fish sauce, Vietnamese coriander, and pepper & salt. I would like to share the list of snails you should order when you travel to Vietnam or stop by Vietnamese snail restaurants in America.

“Ốc Len Xào Dừa”– Mud Creeper sea snails fried in a mild green curry-style coconut sauce.


You should use your hand to pick up the sea snail, put it in your mouth, and start sucking the sweet and fatty coconut broth out of the snail’s shell. The sauce is coconut milk based, on the sweet side, and topped with Vietnamese coriander.

“Ốc Hương Rang Muối” – Areola Babylon snails roasted with salt and chili


The small sweet snails are fried in a hot pan and then coated in a mixture of salt, chili, and lime juice. You can use a small fork to pull out of their shells. “ Ốc Hương Rang Muối” is my favorite one because of the sweet taste and the flavor. The combination of salty and chili adds more flavors that make the small sweet snails so delicious.

“Nghêu Hấp Xã” – steamed sea clams


Steaming clams with the combination of chili peppers, chili powder, chopped stalks of lemongrass, ginger, and lemon. You should try the clam broth that is hot, sweet, spicy, sour and tasty. I remember when I try “Nghêu Hấp Xã” on a rainy day, the smell is so good that I ordered two plates:)

“Ốc Mỡ Xào Tỏi” – common periwinkle sautéed with garlic


This was also a nice plate of snails that most of my friends they often order. However, because the chili sauce was a little sweet and not quite spicy, this plate of snails is not my favorite.

“Sò Điệp Nướng Mỡ Hành” – scallops grilled with chopped green onions and peanuts


The recipe is so simple that you just need to grill scallops with chopped green onions and peanuts. The scallops are grilled first, so they had a bit of a smokey flavor. The taste will be enhanced with chopped green onions and the bunch of peanuts.

“Ốc tỏi Xào Ớt Tỏi” – grilled sea snails with garlic and chili

Snail restaurants will marinate sea snails with garlic and chili then grill later. This sea snail is bigger than others, so you should try with the fish sauce. In order to enhance the flavor of snails. they also add in a few cloves of garlic.

Remember to wash your hands before eating because snails are hands-on food that makes your hands get dirty. There are techniques for eating snails easier– sucking, tearing, cracking, licking, picking and digging.

 

Author

Amy Nguyen

Amy Nguyen

I feel happy to share my experiences with you about Travel - Food - Life around the world. I hope to inspire you to Live-Love- Laugh :)

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