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Ho Chi Minh City stall sells blood pudding topped with pig organs

Saturday, January 08, 2022, 09:24 GMT+7
Ho Chi Minh City stall sells blood pudding topped with pig organs
A bowl of huyet chung consisting of steamed pig blood pudding topped with organs are served at Pham Thi Hoa’s stall on Pham Van Hai Street in Tan Binh District, Ho Chi Minh City. Photo: Hoang An / Tuoi Tre News

A woman in Ho Chi Minh City is making waves in the city’s street food scene thanks to a unique version of pig blood pudding she has been serving up for the past six years.

Pham Thi Hoa, the owner of a street food stall at 122 Pham Van Hai in Tan Binh District, began serving pig’s blood pudding topped with pig organs after visiting Sa Pa – a mountain resort town in Vietnam’s north – where she tried a local specialty called 'thang co,' a horse meat and organ stew made by the region’s H’Mong people.

The 'thang co' she tried in Sa Pa inspired Hoa to put her own spin on the dish by making a version from pig organs.

Pham Thi Hoa has been selling 'huyet chung' at her stall on Pham Van Hai Street in Tan Binh District, Ho Chi Minh City, for around six years. Video: Hoang An / Tuoi Tre News

Hoa’s version, known as ‘huyet chung,’ features steamed blood pudding topped with boiled pig’s throat, tongue, small intestine, heart, and stomach.

The bowl is filled with a broth made from pig’s bone and topped with spring onion.

A loaf of bread and plate of herbs and a small bowl of chili, lime, and fish sauce is served on the side.

Two bowls of huyet chung, which consists of steamed pig blood pudding topped with organs, are served with bread and herbs at Pham Thi Hoa’s stall on Pham Van Hai Street in Tan Binh District, Ho Chi Minh City. Photo: Hoang An / Tuoi Tre News

Two bowls of huyet chung, which consist of steamed pig blood pudding topped with organs, are served with bread and herbs at Pham Thi Hoa’s stall on Pham Van Hai Street in Tan Binh District, Ho Chi Minh City. Photo: Hoang An / Tuoi Tre News

Diners dip the pig organs into a small bowl of chili and lime fish sauce served with their huyet chung. Photo: Hoang An / Tuoi Tre News

Diners dip the pig organs into a small bowl of chili and lime fish sauce served with their huyet chung. Photo: Hoang An / Tuoi Tre News

According to Hoa, the trickiest part of preparing huyet chung is cleaning the organs and making sure they meet her strict hygiene and food safety standards.

“It’s difficult and time-consuming to clean the organs,” Hoa said.

“The small intestine and stomach require more time to clean than everything else and it can be difficult to cook so that they are neither too chewy nor too soft.  

“I have my own way of removing the smell from the organs.

“Due to the amount of time it takes to process the ingredients, I’m only able to keep my stall open from 11:00 am until the evening.”

Pig organs are boiled with ginger and other spices to remove their smell. Photo: Hoang An / Tuoi Tre News

Pig organs are boiled with ginger and other spices to remove their smell. Photo: Hoang An / Tuoi Tre News

According to Hoa, the steamed blood pudding and flavorful broth is what makes her dish different from other popular street eats.

To cook the blood pudding, Hoa steams massive bowls of blood pudding in a high-pressure cooker for five to six hours in order to ensure it is safe to eat.

She also cooks the broth for five to six hours. 

A staff pulls a huge bowl of steamed blood pudding from a  high-pressure furnace. Photo: Hoang An / Tuoi Tre News

A staff pulls a huge bowl of steamed blood pudding from a high-pressure furnace. Photo: Hoang An / Tuoi Tre News

A bowl of ‘huyet chung’ at Hoa’s sells for VND50,000 (US$2.20). For an extra VND40,000 (US$ 1.76), customers can add pig brains to their bowl.

Huy Tuan, a resident of Tan Binh District, has been a regular customer at Hoa’s stall since she first opened her business.

“I tried some other places, but Hoa’s is the cleanest and most delicious,” he said.

“Her stall is always crowded,” he added.

Diners at Hoa’s stall on Pham Van Hai Street in Tan Binh District, Ho Chi Minh City. Photo: Hoang An / Tuoi Tre News

Diners at Hoa’s stall on Pham Van Hai Street in Tan Binh District, Ho Chi Minh City. Photo: Hoang An / Tuoi Tre News

Huyen Anh, a resident from District 7, has only visited Hoa’s stall once, but she loves it so much.

“I love to eat pig organs. Normally I go for a bowl of chao long (intestine porridge) but I decided to give this a try reading about it,” Anh said.

“The hot broth and juicy, soft blood pudding topped with pig organs is a great combination.”

Pham Thi Hoa prepares huyet chung for a customer to take away at her stall on Pham Van Hai Street in Tan Binh District, Ho Chi Minh City. Photo: Hoang An / Tuoi Tre News

Pham Thi Hoa prepares huyet chung for a customer to take away at her stall on Pham Van Hai Street in Tan Binh District, Ho Chi Minh City. Photo: Hoang An / Tuoi Tre News

Pham Thi Hoa prepares huyet chung for a customer to take away at her stall on Pham Van Hai Street in Tan Binh District, Ho Chi Minh City. Photo: Hoang An / Tuoi Tre News

Pham Thi Hoa prepares huyet chung for a customer to take away at her stall on Pham Van Hai Street in Tan Binh District, Ho Chi Minh City. Photo: Hoang An / Tuoi Tre News

Pham Thi Hoa scoops blood pudding to serve diners at her stall on Pham Van Hai Street in Tan Binh District, Ho Chi Minh City. Photo: Hoang An / Tuoi Tre News

Pham Thi Hoa scoops blood pudding to serve diners at her stall on Pham Van Hai Street in Tan Binh District, Ho Chi Minh City. Photo: Hoang An / Tuoi Tre News

Customers purchase huyet chung at Hoa’s stall on Pham Van Hai Street in Tan Binh District, Ho Chi Minh City. Photo: Hoang An / Tuoi Tre News

Customers purchase huyet chung at Hoa’s stall on Pham Van Hai Street in Tan Binh District, Ho Chi Minh City. Photo: Hoang An / Tuoi Tre News

Ingredients for huyet chung at Hoa’s stall on Pham Van Hai Street in Tan Binh District, Ho Chi Minh City. Photo: Hoang An / Tuoi Tre News

Ingredients for huyet chung at Hoa’s stall on Pham Van Hai Street in Tan Binh District, Ho Chi Minh City. Photo: Hoang An / Tuoi Tre News

Cooked pig organs are put in a bowl to be served at Hoa’s stall on Pham Van Hai Street in Tan Binh District, Ho Chi Minh City. Photo: Hoang An / Tuoi Tre News

Cooked pig organs are put in a bowl to be served at Hoa’s stall on Pham Van Hai Street in Tan Binh District, Ho Chi Minh City. Photo: Hoang An / Tuoi Tre News

Hoa pours boiling hot broth into bowls of huyet chung at her stall on Pham Van Hai Street in Tan Binh District, Ho Chi Minh City. Photo: Hoang An / Tuoi Tre News

Hoa pours boiling hot broth into bowls of huyet chung at her stall on Pham Van Hai Street in Tan Binh District, Ho Chi Minh City. Photo: Hoang An / Tuoi Tre News

Besides pig organs, customers can add pig brains to their bowl of steamed blood pudding at Pham Thi Hoa’s stall on Pham Van Hai Street in Tan Binh District, Ho Chi Minh City. Photo: Hoang An / Tuoi Tre News

Besides pig organs, customers can add pig brains to their bowl of steamed blood pudding at Pham Thi Hoa’s stall on Pham Van Hai Street in Tan Binh District, Ho Chi Minh City. Photo: Hoang An / Tuoi Tre News

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Hoang An - Dong Nguyen / Tuoi Tre News

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