What is “Cốm”?
Cốm – Vietnamese green rice flakes is regarded as a traditional type of rice flake serving in south-east Asian areas, specifically Vietnam. Cốm only appears in autumn; therefore, Hanoi people called it as “a special gift of autumn”.
The characteristic of green rice flakes is its natural green color and delicate flavor. However, some people occasionally confuses about the distinction between green rice flakes and rice dish because of the same color, but different taste.
Vietnamese green rice flakes is divided into 3 types depending on the time of the harvest.
– In the middle of season, Cốm is often mixed with pork to make fried pork sausage.
– At the last harvest, Cốm are big, thick, and used as ingredient of special Vietnamese cuisine.
Vietnamese green rice flakes production
Cốm tastes distinctly in different areas of Vietnam; however, Cốm from Vong village (Làng Vòng), located on the outskirts of Hanoi, seems to be the best taste. Families in Vong village have been making Cốm at least 700 years and keeping their long-guarded secret in the whole production process.
The process of production Cốm is relatively complicated. Firstly, farmers harvested green glutinous rice grains since most of all these grains have not been mature yet. In order to have the best taste, people only choose grains of “nep cai hoa vang” – a kind of glutinous rice that yields smallish round grains. Furthermore, it is crucial to harvest rice at the right time, neither too old nor too young.
Then, people will clean these grains before roasting and flattening them with a mortar and pestle to remove all the husks. The final result is green rice flakes with characteristic flavor and softness. Finally, to avoid losing Cốm qualities quickly, people stored them in layers of lotus leaves.
Dishes made with Cốm
- People can eat “Cốm” directly. Connoisseurs suggest chewing on just a pinch of rice at a time to truly savor its subtle scents, natural sweetness and softness.
- Besides, “Cốm” could be used as a precious seasonal ingredient in Vietnamese food.
– “Bánh cốm” – Vietnamese green rice flakes cake
– “Chả cốm” – Vietnamese pork sausage with Cốm
– “Chè cốm” – Green Rice Flakes Sweet Soup Recipe
– Crispy Tiger Prawns Coated with Green Rice Recipe
– Fried Mixed Pork, Shrimp and Green Rice Flakes with Quail Eggs