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Rib porridge – a gift from a familiar street corner

Rib porridge can be eaten at a large restaurant, but it is difficult to feel as delicious as when eating in the middle of the streets of Hanoi.

Monsoon days are the best days to enjoy rib porridge, and they are also the best days to fully enjoy the feeling of winter weather in the North. The more bitter it is, the happier it is to hold a bowl of hot rib porridge in your hand, so warm it makes you feel warm. The joy of enjoying the culinary “legacy” of small alleys, simply that.

Among the many dishes of the capital, rib porridge stands out by its simplicity in taste, but is still attractive to all diners. Holding a bowl of hot love extract and still being caressed by the warm heat spreading on the fingertips, the sense of smell was treated by the faint aroma of new rice mixed in the fragrant broth of ribs. This flattering aroma can only be obtained if the cook correctly chooses the freshest ingredients for the pot of rib porridge that day.

Rib porridge – a gift from a familiar street corner
Alley District is crowded with people coming to eat porridge in the middle of winter. Photo: Khanh Ly

Rice flour to stir porridge must be made from both glutinous rice and plain rice, going through many stages such as soaking in water, grinding, grinding, and cooking for many hours to be qualified to create a famous rib porridge. Glutinous rice is added to increase the deliciousness of the dish, if omitted, it will completely lose the delicious taste of the porridge. In the development era, ready-made rice flour is sold everywhere. This is also easy because this industrial powder only needs to be stirred for ten or fifteen minutes to make a smooth porridge, but the taste cannot be compared with traditional rice flour made with the own secret of the vendors selling rib porridge. Perennial.

As for the ribs, usually, the cook will use the whole ribs to simmer the water to add sweetness and both lean ribs and young ribs. Pork ribs must be fresh, rosy, firm, and elastic. Ribs are washed, then boiled to get water. The difficulty of this processing stage is that it has to be simmered for a long time so that it is really smooth but still not cloudy and the ribs must not be left with residue. The finished product of this dish is the clear porridge, tender ribs, and when eaten, the taste of the meat is sweet, not strong, not harsh. The main ingredients are just that, simple but sophisticated. Because, if only one of the two things is not selected and processed carefully, the bad will be revealed immediately, so it “goes away” the porridge pot.

Scoop the first spoon, we will see a thick porridge inviting. Rib porridge has a medium consistency, not as flexible as a cake, but also not thin enough to slurp like chicken porridge. The porridge is sweet, the ribs are like melting, sometimes there is a little bit of rough cartilage in the mouth. It must be said that eating a piece is sweet, the piece of porridge slips down to the intestines, but the delicious taste is still on the tip of the tongue.

The porridge is sweet, the ribs are like melting, sometimes there is a little bit of rough cartilage in the mouth. Photo: Khanh Ly

The smooth porridge dish is indispensable without a pair of accompanying quartets. On the bowl of white porridge, there is rib meat sprinkled with fat mixed in, above the yellow point of the crispy crackers. The mutual support in both taste and form forms a harmonious and attractive whole that is hard to refuse. The seemingly rustic dish is actually a delicate work of art of Kinh Ky cuisine.

Depending on the taste, the eater will add a little more pepper and chili powder. The bowl of rib porridge during the renovation period has now added minced meat, quail eggs, pork rolls, mushrooms, fried onions… to serve. These variations are also new and strange, but honestly, the traditional bowl of rib porridge served with quarts is already full of flavor and satisfying to the taste buds.

Rib porridge is not for a fancy way of eating like a restaurant with decent tables and chairs and neat napkins and drinks. The most famous rib porridge shops are located in small streets in the heart of Hanoi – carrying porridge La’s head Ly Quoc Su, rib porridge on Hang Bo sidewalk, Huyen Anh porridge at Dong Xuan market… Even if diners are pears. Screaming on the sidewalk around the small cargo, sitting on low plastic chairs and peeing tiredly, these ribs porridge rows are still crowded with people. It’s not difficult to understand, because honestly, the deliciousness of rib porridge is partly in the space when enjoying a bowl of porridge.

A bowl of porridge is sold on Ly Quoc Su street. Photo: Khanh Ly

Sitting next to a hot pot of porridge, we can both enjoy Hanoi’s gifts and admire the colorful scenery of the capital.

Early morning rib porridge bowl, there is a rush of people rushing past. A bowl of rib porridge in the late afternoon, there is a chat of short afternoon gift appointments. Bowl of rib porridge at night, there is the peaceful silence of the sleeping city. We can eat rib porridge at any time, and each session has a different picture for us to admire while enjoying the familiar gift of thirty-six streets.

The rows of rib porridge have become indispensable pieces when reminded of Hanoi. When someone says that they crave the capital’s rib porridge, they not only miss the hot bowl of porridge but also remember the familiar streets and corners where they used to go when they were back home. Not knowing that Hanoi hides bowls of rib porridge, or bowls of rib porridge cleverly hid the whole of Hanoi in it.

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