This is the popular country dish in Hoian and Quang Nam. The noodle is yellow or white in color and made from rice flour. It is mixed with shrimp, pork and vegetables, and topped with grilled rice paper and spices. Similar to rice noodle and chicken or pork soup (Hu tieu), My Quang is a variety of Pho (rice noodle soup), because the noodles are made from rice and covered with soup as serving.
The mystery of the 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. Place in the famous Tra Que savory of Quang Nam Province to 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. The noodles are yellow, somewhat distinct from Pho. However, the main reason for having this color is to be in harmony with the colors of shrimps and crabs. There are also noodles for vegeterians. Quang soft noodle soup tastes best when being served with a variety of herbs, such as mint leaves, houttunya, cabbage, onion, coriander and so on. What makes Quang noodle soups unique is the richness of the broth, the lack of it and the crushed peanut toppings on the noodles. 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 Hoi An Town to enjoy the typical flavor of the soups.
Quang Noodle’s recipe…
1/2 tablespoon turmeric
1 pound rice noodles (as thick
2 tablespoons peanut oil
1 tablespoon fish sauce
1 teaspoon tamarind paste
1 tablespoon sugar
1/2 teaspoon chili powder
Sea salt, to taste
1/2 pound small shrimp
6 quail eggs, hard-boiled for 5
minutes, then peeled 1 handful small watercress leaves
1 handful Thai basil leaves
1/2 cup bean sprouts
1 scallion, thinly sliced
2 tablespoons chopped cilantro
2 tablespoons coarsely ground peanuts
4 handfuls of fried pork rinds, crushed into pieces the size of quarters
4 kumquats, halved like a grapefruit
2 teaspoons finely sliced green chili.
1. Fill a large pot with 3 quarts water. Add the turmeric. Bring to
a boil and add the rice noodles. Cook until tender, about 12 minutes, then drain, reserving the cooking water.
2. Meanwhile, combine the oil, fish sauce, tamarind paste, sugar, chili powder and a pinch of salt in a small saute pan; place over medium-high heat. When the oil bubbles, add the shrimp and saute for 2 minutes on each side. Remove from the heat and stir the quail eggs into the oil.
3. Divide the watercress, basil and bean sprouts among 4 large rice bowls. Quickly dip the rice noodles back into the hot cooking water and then divide among the bowls, so they are slicked with some of the cooking water. Spoon over the shrimp and quail eggs with their cooking oil. Then sprinkle each with the scallion, cilantro, peanuts, a pinch of salt and the pork rinds. Serve, passing the kumquats and chili at the table.