I love the food scene in Vietnam, especially the fact that I can find delicious eats on the streets at any time of the day. It’s such a contrast to back home, where I have to whip up my own breakfast. Here, it’s a whole different story—whether it’s early morning or late at night, the street is alive with food options.
Vietnamese Sticky Rice with Hand-cut Mung Beans recipe
This dish is a gem among Hanoi’s best vegetarian offerings. The base of the dish is sticky rice, which is glutinous rice cooked until it becomes sticky. The highlight of the dish is the mung beans. I saw the vendor slice the mung bean block along an inclined angle. I guessed that’s why it was called hand-cut mung bean. The dish is then topped with crispy fried shallots.
The best part is besides this vegan Vietnamese Sticky Rice with Hand-cut Mung Beans, you can opt for a savory version with the toppings like bologna and finely pork or chicken floss.
I stayed with the vegetarian sticky rice with mung beans because I had enough meat for these days. Despite its seemingly modest size, Xoi Xeo is surprisingly filling. For me, it does the job for a good half day.
Here is how to make the vegan Vietnamese Sticky Rice with Hand-cut Mung Beans:
Vietnamese Sticky Rice with Hand-cut Mung Beans – Xoi Xeo
- 500 g glutinous rice
- 100 g peeled mung beans soak in water for 2 – 3 hours
- 10 g turmeric powder
- 1 tsp salt
- 6 tbsp cooking oil
- 100 g shallot thinly sliced
- Soak the mung beans in water for at least 2 hours.
- Drain the water and cook mung beans in the rice cooker with 3/4 tsp of salt and a moderate amount of water.
- When the beans are cooked, incorporate 2 tablespoons of cooking oil and mix and mash them thoroughly using a spoon.
- Form the mung bean into a ball, making sure to tightly shape it when it’s still hot.
- Heat 2-3 tablespoons of oil in a pan over medium heat. Toss in the sliced shallots and stir vigorously over high heat. Once the shallot slices achieve a rich, dark yellow and a satisfying crispiness, turn off the heat. Transfer them to a plate lined with paper towels to soak up excess oil, allowing them to cool
- Rinse the glutinous rice under cold water until the water runs clear.
- In the rice cooker, combine glutinous rice and water (make sure it's about 1cm above the rice surface). Stir in turmeric powder and 1/4 teaspoon of salt. Cook the rice until it achieves a sticky and fully cooked consistency.
- Once the sticky rice is cooked, add 2 tbsp of cooking oil and mix thoroughly.
- On a plate, take a small portion of sticky rice evenly. Thinly slice green bean balls using a knife and place them on top. Drizzle the dish with the excess oil from step 5, sprinkle with fried shallots, and enjoy.
Different types of Sticky Rice
Vietnamese sticky rice, or Vietnamese xoi,” is a versatile and beloved dish that comes in various types, each offering a unique flavor profile and texture. Here are some popular types of Vietnamese sticky rice:
- Colored Vietnamese Sticky Rice is a vibrant twist on the traditional one. It’s a visual feast for both the eyes and the taste buds. These colorful versions often derive their hues from natural ingredients like the sweet gourds, aka Gac fruit (for the red), pandan leaves (for the green), dragon fruits or butterfly pea flowers (for the purple), and turmeric (for the yellow). Each color carries its own unique flavor.
- Savory Sticky Rice (Xoi Man): This flavorful and satisfying dish is one of my favorites. This savory variation is topped with different ingredients like shredded chicken, Chinese sausage, dried shrimp, pork floss, Vietnamese pork bologna, quail egg, pate, and scallion oil. It’s one of the most popular choices for breakfast.
- Vietnamese Sticky Rice with Beans (Xoi Dau) is a delightful dish that combines sticky rice with coconut milk (optional) and beans (mung beans, black beans, red beans, black-eyed beans) or peanuts. This Vietnamese sweet sticky rice type is often served with muoi me (a mixture of sesame seeds, peanuts, and salt).
- Cudweed Sticky Rice Cake (Xoi Khuc) is quite different from other sticky rice type. It’s made of glutinous rice flour blended with finely chopped cudweed leaves. Its filling consists of crushed steamed mung beans and succulent pork belly.
- Fried Sticky Rice (Xoi Chien) is similar to a mini burger. The outer is the deep-fried sticky rice while the inner is the mixture of meat and vegetables. It’s served along with a special dipping sauce.