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La Vong fish cake, also known as Cha Ca La Vong, is a famous and beloved dish that originated in Hanoi, Vietnam. It is a flavorful combination of marinated fish, fragrant herbs, and spices, resulting in a mouthwatering delicacy that captures the essence of Vietnamese cuisine. Traditionally, this dish is enjoyed at the iconic La Vong restaurant in Hanoi, which has been serving it for over a century. However, with the right ingredients and techniques, you can recreate the authentic La Vong fish cake in the comfort of your own home. In this guide, we will take you through the steps to prepare this iconic dish, allowing you to savor the flavors of Hanoi no matter where you are.
30 Minutes Preparation
60 Minutes For
La Vong grilled fish is a folk dish prepared by the Doan family, living at 14 Cha Ca Street (formerly Hang Son Street). Up to now, they have become a favorite of Ha Thanh gourmets.
Over time, the two words “cha ca” became the name of the city and became one of the five famous cultural and material addresses of Hanoi in the past and present. At this restaurant, there is a statue of Mr. La Vong sitting with his knees bent and fishing – a symbol of a person who is talented and philanthropic but is waiting for the right time to make great karma. Therefore, diners are used to calling La Vong grilled fish and now it has become the name of the restaurant as well as the name of the dish that is forever known..
Ingredients for making La Vong fish cakes at home
400g salmon fillet
50g minced galangal
30g batch rice
50g shrimp paste
5g turmeric powder
50g dill cut into pieces
30g scallions cut into pieces
20g roasted peanuts
Spices: White sugar, fish sauce, cooking oil
Good tip: When buying salmon, you should choose a fish with a glossy body, when pressing the meat with your hand, it has elasticity and is not scratched. If you choose to buy the first part, you should choose the one with the eyes still clear, slightly convex. Fish fat should not be burned, the fish is delicious, fatty and sweet.
How to make La Vong fish cake
Step 1Process materials
First, wash the fish thoroughly and let it dry. Then, cut them into bite-sized pieces, then marinate with the amount of prepared ingredients: minced galangal, batch rice, shrimp paste, turmeric, sugar and fish sauce. When finished, mix well, then let it sit for about 1 hour to absorb the flavors.
Step 2Grilled fish cake
Put the grill on the charcoal grill, then arrange the fish pieces on top and bake until cooked, golden color can be picked up on a plate.
Step 3La Vong fried fish cake
Then, put the oil pan on the stove, when the oil is hot, drop the grilled fish in and fry again until hot. Next, add dill, scallions and peanuts, stir-fry quickly and enjoy.
Step 4Making La Vong fish sauce with shrimp paste
Mix 1 tablespoon shrimp paste with ¼ teaspoon MSG, ½ tablespoon sugar, ½ teaspoon minced garlic, 1 tablespoon lemon juice, ½ teaspoon garlic oil, stir well, season to your taste .
Reference : How to cook bun thang in Hanoi’s taste
Step 5Finished product
Fried fish eaten hot right on the pan is the most delicious, eat wherever you go. At that time, we will feel the delicate blend of delicious chewy fish, evenly fried, golden brown with pungent flavor from leaves, greasy roasted peanuts, fleshy and characteristic strong smell of shrimp paste. .
To the fullest, you should eat it with fresh vermicelli, and dipping it with shrimp paste or normal fish sauce is still delicious!
Instructions for taking salmon fillet
Step 1 After you buy it, wash it and rub it with lemon and salt to prevent the fish from being viscous and remove the fishy smell of the fish.
Step 2 Place the fish on a cutting board and place a sharp knife next to the fish’s pectoral fins to cut the fishbone diagonally downward. Flip the fish over and repeat the same cut to separate the head from the body. Use a knife to make a slight incision along the back of the fish. Cut off the tail of the fish.
Step 3Cut around the fish’s chest to fillet. Flip the bone on a cutting board and cut the fillet in the opposite direction from tail to tip. You will get two fillets. Cut the fillet into bite-sized pieces, wash and dry.
How to preserve salmon when not in use?
If you buy frozen salmon, you need to put it in a bowl of water to defrost before using. When not in use , put a layer of crushed ice on the bottom of the box, put the fish on top, cover the lid and put it in the top compartment to prevent the fishy smell from spreading to other places.
The attractive taste of La Vong fish cake will make you want to eat it forever without stopping your chopsticks. Especially, on a cold day, sitting by the warm kitchen, we can enjoy this dish with both taste and smell. The sound of oil in the pan squeaking is very pleasant.
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In conclusion, making La Vong fish cake at home is a feasible and enjoyable endeavor for seafood lovers. By following the authentic recipe from Hanoi, one can recreate the flavors and textures that have made this dish famous. It is essential to source fresh ingredients, especially snakehead fish, to ensure the best taste possible. The careful preparation of fish patties, marinating in turmeric and fermented shrimp paste, along with frying until crispy, results in a delightful and aromatic experience. Additionally, the vital components of rice vermicelli, herbs, and dipping sauce complete the dish, enhancing its taste and providing a well-rounded meal. Despite the meticulous steps involved, attempting to make La Vong fish cake at home allows for customization and a deeper appreciation of Vietnamese cuisine. So, put on your chef’s hat and bring a piece of Hanoi to your kitchen by mastering this iconic dish.
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