Banh It Hue (Vietnamese sticky rice cake), a delicious specialty of Hue, is a journey that encompasses the flavors and traditional culinary arts of central Vietnam. With its soft, smooth crust made from white glutinous rice flour and young banana leaves, Banh it is not only a symbol of culinary harmony but also the distinctive aroma of Hue’s countryside. Bánh it Hue is not just a delicious treat but also a journey of preserving and inheriting Hue’s unique culinary culture, with each cake containing the stories of red soil, tradition, and love.

1. How to make Banh It (Vietnamese sticky rice cake) in the Hue style

Banh It Hue is a small, flat circle, often wrapped in banana leaves. There are two main types of Banh It Hue: bánh ít nhân tôm thịt (shrimp and pork filling) and bánh ít nhân đậu xanh (green bean filling).

Banh It Hue
Banh It Hue

2. Banh It Shrimp and pork filling

2.1 Ingredients shrimp and pork filling.

  • 200 grams ground pork
  • 100 grams ground shrimp
  • 1 green onion, chopped
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 1 tablespoon fish sauce
  • 1 teaspoon sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon pepper
Banh It Hue

2.2 Instructions for making

Step 1: Prepare the ingredients

Rinse the pork and shrimp, then mince them.

Mince the green onion and garlic.

Step 2: Mix the filling

Add the pork, shrimp, green onion, garlic, fish sauce, sugar, salt, and pepper to a bowl. Mix well until all of the ingredients are combined.

Step 3: Make the dough

Combine the glutinous rice flour and rice flour in a bowl. Gradually add water, mixing until the dough forms a soft and pliable ball.

Step 4: Wrap the Banh It

Divide the dough into small balls, about the size of a golf ball.

Flatten each ball of dough into a thin circle.

Place a spoonful of the filling in the center of each circle of dough.

Fold the dough over the filling, sealing the edges tightly.

Shape the banh it into a crescent moon shape.

Step 5: Steam the Banh It

Place the bánh ít in a steamer lined with banana leaves.

Steam the bánh ít for about 20-30 minutes, or until they are cooked through.

3. Banh It green bean filling

3.1 Instructions green bean filling

  • 100 grams peeled mung bean
  • 100 grams sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
Banh It Hue
Banh It Hue

3.2 Instructions for making

Step 1: Prepare the ingredients

Soak the green beans in water for about 2 hours, then steam them until they are soft.

Step 2: Puree the green beans

Add the steamed green beans to a blender and puree until smooth.

Step3: Mix the filling

Add the pureed green beans, sugar, and salt to a bowl. Mix well until all of the ingredients are combined.

Step 4: Make the dough

Combine the glutinous rice flour in a bowl. Gradually add water, mixing until the dough forms a soft and pliable ball.

Step 5: Wrap the Banh It

Divide the dough into small balls, about the size of a golf ball.

Flatten each ball of dough into a thin circle.

Place a spoonful of the filling in the center of each circle of dough.

Fold the dough over the filling, sealing the edges tightly.

Shape the bánh ít into a crescent moon shape.

Step 6: Steam the Banh It

Place the Banh It in a steamer lined with banana leaves.

Steam the bánh ít for about 20-30 minutes, or until they are cooked through.

4. Instructions for making the dipping sauce

Banh It Hue dipping sauce is an essential part of the dish. It has a sweet and sour, spicy flavor that goes perfectly with the bánh ít. The sauce is also very easy to make.

4.1 ingredients for dipping sauce

  • 2 tablespoons fish sauce
  • 2 tablespoons sugar
  • 1 tablespoon lime juice
  • 1/2 teaspoon chili pepper, minced
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground pepper
  • Water
Banh It Hue

 Instructions for making.

Step 1: Bring water to a boil. Once the water is boiling, add sugar and fish sauce.

Step 2: For a sour flavor, add a splash of lemon juice. Cook until the fish sauce reduces slightly.

Step 3: Finely chop the garlic and chili peppers to add flavor to the dipping sauce.

Step 4: Mix the chopped garlic and chili peppers with the dipping sauce, stir well, and season to taste.

Combine all ingredients in a bowl, whisking until the sugar dissolves.

Adjust the amount of chili pepper and pepper to taste.

Dipping sauce
Dipping sauce

5. How to enjoy Banh It Hue

Place the cake and crispy pork rinds in a bowl. Garnish with a bit of chopped scallion and fried shrimp. The cake’s true essence lies in its filling and the sweet and sour dipping sauce. The flavor of the cake explodes in your mouth from the first bite. The richness of the meat, the chewiness of the banh wrapper, the tangy and salty flavors of the fish sauce, and a hint of chili to awaken your taste buds. The cake-rich flavor is hard to describe.

Banh It Hue
Banh It Hue

Reference