Banh duc: a subtle gift of Viet Nam’s countryside
Update: Aug 01, 2016
Banh duc (cake made of rice flour and lime water) is a popular dish in almost all rural areas in Northern Viet Nam, becoming part of countryside’s culture.


Whoever born in the countryside of the Red River Delta, banh duc is for sure a gift of his or her childhood. “Banh duc” is often placed on small pieces of banana leaf, which are arranged on a bamboo flat basket for sale in rural open markets.

It can be easily seen that all the ingredients of banh duc are from ordinary agricultural products. The main ingredients are rice flour and peanuts. The rice flour is mixed with thin lime water before being added with more fresh water and boiled until it becomes a kind of paste. Peanuts are added to the hot paste so that they could still stay there when the paste cools down. Banh duc often takes the shape of the bowl that holds it.

In the past or at present, people could and can always buy banh duc as gift for children or the elderly at home. Banh duc tastes best when served with tuong (Vietnamese sweet soya sauce) or mam tom (Vietnamese shrimp paste).

Banh duc is cheap, delicious and easy to make. Those who have been away from home for a long time, the nostalgia of banh duc might make them more homesick, especially those born and grew up in the countryside. Nowadays we can buy banh duc in super markets but the one in rural markets bears the quintessence of the Vietnamese traditional culture.