Since the recipe developed in coastal regions, pickled jellyfish wrapped with fried tofu in a perilla leaf is undoubtedly not a traditional Hanoian delicacy. However, Hanoians develop a yearly hankering for raw jellyfish dipped in mam tom, a savory, wacky shrimp paste, during the chilly late spring and early summer.
A gift from the sea
In reality, this difficult summer specialty from Hanoi has its roots in coastal regions like Hai Phong Province, for instance. Red jellyfish that have just been captured will first go through a process of preparation. Then, pieces of cooked tofu and pickled jellyfish are rolled in a perilla leaf and dipped into “mam tom,” a savory shrimp paste. A slice of lemon, copra, and fresh herbs round out this delicate mixture and add a wonderful aroma and taste.
In the Old Quarter of Hanoi, a few sidewalk restaurants offer this crunchy seasonal dish. You should visit the food stands near Dong Xuan Market, Hang Chieu, Hoe Nhai, Duong Thanh, and Lo Duc Streets if you want to eat the finest rolls of red jellyfish. A plate of expertly prepared red jellyfish served with extra ingredients typically costs between $1 and $1.5 USD.
Are you a fan of sushi? If so, you should try raw red jellyfish salad
Does eating these Hanoian street dishes make you a little uneasy? Actually, this meal is a wonderful combination of buttery copra, smooth tofu, crispy jellyfish, fresh herbs, and shrimp paste (mam tom) with a powerful, salty flavor.
The recipe is finished by rolling it in large perilla leaves (la tia to), dipping it in fermented shrimp paste, and adding some herbs, tofu, copra, and jellyfish.
The flavor is mild and refreshing, and when mixed with the potent flavor of shrimp paste, the herbs, and copra, it truly creates an unforgettable taste.