Knowing Vietnamese noodles can be extremely helpful, as “pho” is to Hanoi and beef rice noodles is to Hue, Quang noodles is very popular in Quang Nam and Da Nang.
Quang noodle soups differ than most normal noodle soups in that the soups have just enough broth to barely cover the noodles. Unlike other Vietnamese noodle soup bowls whose broth will cover the noodles almost completely, Quang noodle broth is barely enough to slurp during the meal. If you do not eat a Quang noodle bowl fast enough, the broth will generally quickly be soaked up by the noodles. Quang noodle soups are generally pork and dried shrimp broth based, although some regional and family recipes will use chicken and even duck. What makes Quang noodle soups unique is the richness of the broth, the lack of it and the crushed peanut toppings on the noodles.
The mystery of Quang noodle is in that pot above. This is ‘nuoc sot mi quang’ or Quang noodle sauce. This makes the stock slightly sweet and a smidgen spicy. This dish’s ingredients include rice, vegetables and meat. After being soaked in water, the rice is ground to a fine powder and made into attractive smooth white noodles. Accompanying vegetables are water morning-glory, cress, young banana flowers and herbs. Especially, the famous Tra Que savory of Quang Nam Province will give the dish more flavour. You can use pork, chicken, fish, crab or shrimp to make the broth. If chicken is chosen, the meat is separated, seasoned and stir-fried while the bones are stewed. Finish the stock by adding cooked chicken meat.
There are many Quang noodle restaurants in Quang Nam and Da Nang. Each area is famous for one certain recipe. For example, Thanh Chiem Village in Dien Ban District, Quang Nam Province is known for shrimp noodle, while chicken noodle is at its best in Tuy Loan, Hoa Vang District, Da Nang City.
A traditional version says: “I make for you, darling, green tea and Quang noodles to express my feelings”. Thus, you can visit a Quang noodle kiosk in Danang City to enjoy the typical flavor of the soups, for instance: Ngan Quang Noodle at 108 Dong Da Street, Lu Quang Noodle at Ham Nghi Street, Vi Quang Noodle at 155 Trung Nu Vuong Street and so on.
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