Local flavor

Gio lua, delicious Vietnamese ham

Gio lua (steamed pork roll) is a traditional essential dish at Tet and other special events such as weddings, parties and death anniversaries.
Despite their different cuisines, people from the northern, central and southern parts of Vietnam all share a common food during Tet, which is gio lua, a simple but delicious dish for men, women and children alike. That’s why gio lua is also a popular gift for friends and relatives at festive occasions.

The dish is made from only two ingredients: lean pork and fish sauce.

The meat for making gio lua must be lean and fresh, which is then pounded until it becomes pasty. Add two or three tablespoons of fish sauce to the pork paste and tightly wrap it in banana leaves in a cylindrical shape, using bamboo strings to tie the roll. Drop the pork roll into a pot of boiling water and boil it for about one hour during which time the roll must be constantly submerged in water.

A perfect gio lua must have an ivory color with a very slight pink shade and some small holes on its surface. Served with liquor, gio lua is regarded as the best food for many Vietnamese men during Tet
By Khanh Long

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