I was quite pleased when I saw I'd be sending my taste buds down Mac Dinh Chi Street in District 1 for The Food Section as I've blogged this way before. Last time I scored a beltin' good beefy Vietnamese Pho and I glugged back Asia's best beer in Vietnam's first genuine Czech micro-brewery. There's plenty more mastication to be had along this lengthy street. There's a decent Korean restaurant, Saigon's best Malaysian shack, a not so good Thai joint and a rack of Vietnamese lean-to restaurants serving noodle soups like Bun bo Hue and Hu tieu. On this visit I skirted the lot and took the alfresco option at the stall pictured above at 6 Mac Dinh Chi Street, just over the road from the US Consulate.
There's nothing much to Banh my opla (Fried egg filled baguette), other than a couple of slack-fried eggs, a dose of greens and a crispy baguette. This frying frauleine hammers out quality cholesterol fayre from 6am til 6pm, seven days a week and she's had her stall in the same spot for the last ten years. Vietnamese chicken eggs are far tastier than those I have had in Europe. I'm not sure why that is, but it was the same story the last time I had Banh my opla down Chinatown way. The price might have gone up sharply since bird flu sent a chill through the land, but the taste remains topnotch.
This stall also sells Banh my pate (Chicken liver pate baguette), Banh my phomai (Cream cheese baguette) and slabs of cold meat tucked away inside banana leaf wraps on the table. For a Banh my opla, there's a whole bundle of add-on choices; spring onion, sliced cucumber, pickled carrot and raddish, red chilli slivers and a splash of hot sauce. I ordered everything minus the cucumber and chili. It's a barnstormin' baguette. You'd be hard pressed to find finer, fresher street scoff than this. And at 5,000VD (30 cents) you won't find cheaper either.