You may be surprised but in Hanoi, the capital of Vietnam, there is a street named "Fish Cake" (Cha Ca – in Vietnamese). The street is right at the centre of Hanoi’s ancient streets, one of 36 ancient streets and districts, which you may have heard of in the historical documments and tourist guidebooks.
Why was the street named so? I am not so knowledgeable about history so I cannot tell you a detailed story. But nearly a century ago, the street had a different name. When a household started to make fish cakes grilled over charcoal and they made a good business, other households along the street also began their business making only fish cakes. People started to go there for fish cakes only and forgot about the old name of the street, so the street was re-named into Fish Caks street (Pho Cha Ca).
However, now tourists coming to Hanoi are often introduced to try fish cake at another more well-known street, which is La Vong, and the phrase "Cha Ca La Vong", which is the combination of fish cake and the street name, is mentioned by most Hanoians. There are some strongly recommended addresses to try fish cakes there, so please don’t forget that when you visit Hanoi.
Ingredients: (4 người)
- 300g fish fillet
- 150-200g ground pork
- 3 stalks spring onion, finely chopped
- 1 small bunch of dill, finely chopped
- 1.5 tbs fish sauce
- 1/2 tsp ground pepper
- vegetable oil, to pan fry
- Combine all the ingredients, except for the oil – of course. Use the back of a spoon to mix and press the mixture hardly until you get a nearly fine paste.
- Shape into small flat balls of free size.
- Heat the oil in a large frying pan, fry the fish cakes until golden brown on both sides.