Because I love food so much, one of my favorite things to do when I travel is wake up early and go to the morning markets and proceed to explore the local cuisine for breakfast. In many countries I’ve been to, breakfast is one of the best meals because the food is fresh, and people are on their way to school and work and need something quick and delicious to grab, or sit down, and eat. In Vietnam, though you’ll find street food and restaurants open around the clock, I still think the the best food and some of the best selection of food was available in the morning.
One of the recommendations I got from many of you was to try a breakfast restaurant called Bánh Mì Hòa Mã, extremely famous throughout Saigon for serving bánh mì ốp la, or the Vietnamese personal baguettes served with a personal pan of fried sunny side up eggs. The combination, though simple and pretty easy to make, can be exceptionally delicious. So one day when I was in Saigon, I walked over to Bánh Mì Hòa Mã. The restaurant is actually housed in an indoor facility, and all the cooking is done indoors, but all the seating is along the side of the alley street, where they set up small plastic tables and chairs.
I arrived at the Vietnamese breakfast street food stall right as they were opening, just after 7 am, and luckily I got a good table, and Ying and I were one of the first people to eat there for the morning – but soon after we sat down, many other hungry breakfast eater came to sit down. I ordered just the standard plate of bánh mì ốp la, which didn’t take long to come out of the kitchen, sizzling hot. The eggs were scorched on the edges on the bottom of the little personal pan, and the tops of the eggs were still runny, rich and creamy. Along with my pan of op la, fried sunny side up eggs, I got a personal baguette, called banh mi, a side dish of pickled cucumbers and carrots, and an extra side dish of pate, just for fun.
The eggs were also topped with a few scoops of caramelized, extremely fragrant onions and chilies, and along with a selection of Vietnamese sausage, which I think was pre-fried in a different pan and then added to the top of the eggs, artfully thrown on. The bits of meat and the onions provided some extremely flavor to the eggs and the crusty banh mi, and I think that’s the flavor that really elevated this banh mi op la to extreme delicious, best breakfast I ate in Vietnam status.
For some bites I would scoop on a bit of pate to my pieces of super crusty baguette, then sop up the beautiful egg yolk, and bits of meat. It was truly a breakfast to remember, one of the finest breakfasts I’ve eaten anywhere in the world. On the table, there was also some Chinese tea, which went well with the rich breakfast. They also had coffee, but since I had just had a cup before coming to eat, I didn’t have one.
Bánh Mì Hòa Mã
Address: 53 Cao Thắng, District 3, Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam (on Hem 51 Cao Thang)
Our total bill came to 91,000 VND for both of us, which was about $4.20 US
More details coming soon
Music in this video from audionetwork.com
Video eaten and made by Mark Wiens and Ying Wiens: http://migrationology.com/blog & http://www.eatingthaifood.com/blog/
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Thank you for watching this video, happy eating!