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Delicious sweet shrimp rolls with a “hometown” flavor

Shrimp fried rice is a famous dish of my hometown, also my favorite dish among the dishes my mother used to cook for my brothers and sisters. I can eat shrimp cakes all year round without getting bored, there are times when I wish I could eat shrimp cakes instead of rice. However, my mother only makes shrimp cakes on rainy days. At that time, I kept wondering why we had to wait for a rainy day to make it for us. At that time, my mother just smiled and said nothing, until later I learned that only on rainy days she did not go out in the fields and had time to cook for us such sophisticated dishes. Maybe that’s why every time I think about the rains, the image of our mother and daughter huddled in the small kitchen, outside the sound of the rain pounding on the roof comes back to me like a slow-motion movie in my mind.

Telling the story of the village: Sweet and delicious shrimp cakes with a delicious taste of the countryside - Photo 1.

Shrimp fried rice is a famous dish of my hometown. Photo: Le Dinh Trung

Shrimp cakes are sophisticated from choosing ingredients to processing, so making this dish is very time-consuming. About the ingredients to make shrimp paste include pork, gac, rice noodles, papaya, carrots, spices and of course, the main ingredient is shrimp. Pork must be a type of meat that is only half lean and half fat so that when eaten it is not dry or sick. In particular, the meat must be fresh, not dull, when pressing the meat with your hands, it must be elastic and firm. Shrimps selected to make shrimp paste must be large, fresh shrimp, absolutely do not choose shrimp whose legs have turned black or rotten shrimp. With that, the shrimp cake made is delicious and right, my mother just showed us and said.

The shell of shrimp paste is made from pho cake, usually people will buy pho cake for convenience and fast. But my mother often chooses to make it herself, she put all kinds of rice flour, flour, cornstarch and add a little salt in a bowl and mix well, then add water, stir until the mixture dissolves and then let the powder settle. . The water above, after the powder settles, the mother will pour it out and then add an amount of water equal to the amount of water that has just been poured out and stir well. While my mother was stirring the dough, my brother and I had already boiled a large pot of water, which was boiling, and my mother placed an iron tray on top of the water pot, waiting for the steam to rise to make the hot tray hot, so she began to pour the powder in to coat the pot. setgdrh. The thin layer of flour is evenly coated on the iron tray, after about three minutes, it will be cooked, the mother brings the iron tray down to wait for it to cool to take out the pho noodles and place another tray on the pot. Just like that, each piece, each piece of white rice noodle, scented with flour, was made by her mother.

Telling the story of the village: Sweet and delicious shrimp cakes with a delicious taste of the countryside - Photo 2.

Shrimp fried rice is also my favorite dish among the dishes my mother used to cook for my brothers and sisters. Photo: Le Dinh Trung

Shrimps will be washed and soaked in diluted salt water for one to two minutes, then peeled, de-threaded and heads removed. The pork is salted outside, then rinsed with clean water several times, then drained and cut into bite-sized pieces. Gac fruit remove the seeds filtered through the ray to get the flesh, then add a little white wine to blend until smooth. All these ingredients will serve to make the filling of shrimp paste. Mom put a little oil on the pan, then put the pork on the island. The sound of sizzling pork fat mixed with the sound of yoke coming from my brothers and sisters’ stomachs seemed to drown out the sound of the rain falling outside. After the meat is white, the mother continues to add shrimp to the island until the shrimp meat turns pink, then turn off the stove and scoop it out onto a plate. Mom added minced purple onion and sautéed it up, then put the gac and the meat plate back into the kitchen, add spices and continue to stir-fry for five minutes. At this time, the color of gac has mixed with the color of meat and shrimp into a beautiful red color, the smell of onions and meat from the pan makes my nostrils swell because I try to inhale to stretch a belly of that fragrance. Mom waits for the dish to cool down before bringing it down to puree it. After swinging the pestle on the side of the stone mortar for a while, the shrimp and minced meat blend together to form a thick red mixture, so the shrimp paste is done.

Pho is cut into square pieces, each piece of cake will put a spoonful of shrimp paste into the hand to complete the process of making shrimp paste. At this stage, my brother and I were already very impatient, but at this time we still could not eat. Each piece of shrimp paste will be placed on a bamboo griddle and then grilled over charcoal. While my mother gathered charcoal and grilled shrimp cakes, my brother and I were in charge of making the dipping sauce with the main ingredients being papaya and carrots. Papayas and carrots, after being washed, peeled and sliced, will be soaked in salt water to be crispy when eaten. Then take out a large bowl and add sugar and vinegar, mix well to infuse. In another large bowl, mix together fish sauce, warm water, sugar, and vinegar. After mixing, mix the two bowls together to complete the shrimp paste sauce. When it rains, the coals are moist, the smoke is burning, it takes a while for the mother to light the fire. Each tray of bamboo and shrimp cakes is placed on top, she uses a fan to gently fan both sides of the bamboo grid, and the white shrimp cakes. gradually fade to a beautiful golden color. The aroma of fragrant shrimp paste made my brothers and sisters swallow their saliva.

Telling the story of the village: Sweet and delicious shrimp rolls with a delicious taste of the countryside - Photo 3.

In those days, because of the sophistication of shrimp cakes, few sellers, mainly made to serve their families. Photo: Le Dinh Trung

After spending a whole day in the kitchen, the plate of golden grilled shrimp paste was neatly placed on the tray next to the bowl of dipping sauce and a basket of raw vegetables picked from the garden. Just waiting for the mother’s words, “Eat your children”, my two pairs of chopsticks and my brother’s chopsticks are working at full capacity. The shrimp patty is fragrant, crispy on the outside but very soft on the inside, the sweet shrimp patty, the fatty pork belly melts in the mouth, combined with the sweet and sour dipping sauce, the crunchy and crunchy papaya pieces make us He kept chewing like he was afraid someone would eat his share. Mother watched us eat, her eyes shining with indescribable joy.

In those days, because of the sophistication of shrimp cakes, few sellers, mainly made to serve their own families. Later, many people from other provinces and cities came to Thanh to be treated to this dish, so they were addicted. Next time, just ask to buy it. A person who grasped the opportunity should open the first shrimp cake shop, seeing success, many subsequent shops were also born. Now, not only locals like me but also tourists also have the opportunity to enjoy shrimp cakes, even bring them home as gifts easily. I also wandered around the shops selling shrimp cakes. The shrimp cakes are now improved with more types of people dipping in flour and deep-frying, the grilled type is still grilled on a charcoal stove, but using an electric fan is much more leisurely than in the past. But why do I feel like I’m missing something when I eat it, maybe it’s the sound of the rain pouring out in the small kitchen that year, those simple things become special for the delicious sweet shrimp rolls. Bar.

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