Banh da cua (Crab noodle soup)
Banh da cua is the most famous specialty in Hai Phong, and also one of the dishes that makes up the reputation of the Port’s cuisine.
The noodle is flat, similar to Pho, but broader, heartier, chewier and brown in color. The noodle of banh da cua is noticeably more flavorful than Pho, and it doesn’t get mushy as easily as Pho. Banh da cua comes in two forms: dry (tron, meaning ‘mix’, in which you would eat it like a noodle salad) and wet (nuoc, meaning ‘stock’, a more traditional brothy arrangement like Pho). Each form is delicious in its own way. On a hot day, many locals prefer the dry Banh da cua, and in the cold winter wind, a hot bowl of Banh da cua nuoc helps warm up one’s body like no other. You can request as many types of toppings as you’d like, such as crab meat, freshwater crab paste, be be, fish cake, fried tofu, greens etc.