Green sticky rice is Hanoi autumn gift
Green rice-making career in Vong village had the origin of a legend: In a fall, thousands of years ago, when rice crops were still young, it rained heavily with strong wind which broke the dyke and all the rice fields were also flooded. Vong village‘s people tried to harvest the immature rice grains to dry to eat and store for later time. Surprisingly, that unexpected product possesses its own taste and it is so attractive that villagers usually make it for eating every autumn.
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Up to now, green sticky rice has made of many different types of rice, however, it becomes the most delicious when being made of glutinous rice in both two seasons per year: the forth lunar month crop and the main harvest. Normally, the best green sticky rice is in the main harvest (from the full-moon day of July lunar month to in the end of September lunar month).
Rice grains become round, equal and fragrant after threshing grains, eliminating rice straws and plat pieces and washing with water, and then, putting into a pan to be roasted. The stove that is used to roast green sticky rice is covered by coal slag; nevertheless, coal is not used for burning but firewood. The pan is usually made from cast-iron so that green sticky rice grains are not burned and still soft and fragrant.
The grains are roasted with small fire and stirred on and on. After roasting, those grains are waiting for being cool down and put into the mortar to pound. The grains were pounded regularly and not too strongly. Peel of the grains will be parted and continued pounding. Based on time of harvesting, they will be estimated and pounded about 7 times.
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Green sticky rice will be packed into 2 layers of leaf. The inner is green and cool to keep green sticky rice soft and green. The outer is leaves of the lotus with being fragrant and refined.
The smell of green sticky rice is fragrant. Picking up in one’s hand of a little bit green sticky rice and putting into the mouth gradually. The grains touch the tongue and become sweet, nutty and buttery.
The autumn in Ha Noi is very strange with the beauty of sweetness and special presents such as: lotus tea, “sấu”, sapodilla plum and especially it is young green sticky rice.
Although green sticky rice is not the dish of four seasons, anyone has not just enjoyed Vong village’s green sticky rice in autumn, may be, it is a pity.
These days, green sticky rice is processed into “bánh cốm”, “chè cốm” and so on. They are not less delicious than green sticky rice by soft and fragrant green sticky rice, sapid green beans and brittle coconut fibers. “Bánh cốm” and “ bánh su sê” have become an important couple of cake in engagement ceremony of Hanoi’s People for a long time.
The picture, the girl who carries shoulder poles and steps rhythmically, only need to put down the shoulder poles which are covered by lotus leaves and some green straws fibers, makes people in Ha Noi miss new green sticky rice season.