Mar 2008

Bánh Chuối Hấp

Although it was just a marketing campaign by Chaquita, I really do think that bananas are “quite possibly, the world’s perfect food.” Besides being packed with oodles of nutrients, bananas are low-maintenance and deliciously versatile.

I love bananas squished between a peanut butter and honey sandwich, I love them gooey and caramelized atop vanilla ice cream, and I especially love them in the form of bánh chuối hấp.

Bánh chuối (literally “banana cake”) is a sweet banana cake or bread pudding from Vietnam. Although its exact ingredients may vary, it is usually made with ripe bananas or plantains, coconut milk, sugar, white bread, shredded young coconut, condensed milk, butter, eggs, and vanilla extract. In the finished dish, the cooked banana often appears purplish-red in color.

Can you believe that Wikipedia has an entry for bánh chuối? Incredible.

The version I had of bánh chuối was steamed (hấp) and generously doused in a sweet and salty coconut milk with tiny tapioca pearls and sprinkled with toasted sesame seeds. The accoutrements highlighted the banana’s natural sweetness and slight zing. At 2,000 VND a pop, bánh chuối is indeed good, clean and tasty fun.

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7 thoughts on “Bánh Chuối Hấp

  1. Once again, you made me drool looking at the banh chuoi hap. I like it with a healthy dose of coconut milk. The taste and texture, sweet, little gooey, go perfectly with coconut milk. 2000 VD is a bargain!

  2. that looks so good. makes me wish i that i bought some yesterday when we went to the vietnamese stores.

  3. Duy – Just tried the che chuoi this morning on a food tour. As good as banh chuoi, but not as filling. My vote goes to banh chuoi.

    htran – Droolage is the goal of this blog ;-)!

    Angel Van – I think that means you ought to head back to the Vietnamese stores. Too bad these don’t freeze too well.

  4. hey,
    That looks so good. At home, we often make steam banana cake and cooked coconut milk (with my mom’s secret :P)

    I heard that American baked banana cake seems different from Vietnamese one. Have you ever tried?

    Riped banana + bread + milk + sugar + bake it! = baked banana cake 😛

  5. Have you tried Banh Chuoi Nuong Nuoc Dua? It’s sold in every wet market. Banana wrapped around by sticky rice and then wrapped around by banana leaf and then get grilled on char coal. It’s eaten with the same sweet coconut sauce and (a bit) salty sesame seeds.

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