What is a typical Vietnamese family dinner?

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What is a representative Vietnamese family dinner?
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When I was younger and my family ate more traditionally, dinner usually consisted of cooked white rice, a soup of some sort (what we call canh), a meat/protein dish (like thịt kho), and a vegetable dish (like rau muống). We generally spooned the soup over the rice, added a serving of meat and vegetables, mixed it all up, and voilà, a very homestyle Vietnamese meal. Most of the traditional foods Vietnamese eat at home aren't found in restaurants, which is how most people know Vietnamese cuisine. Occasionally, we'd have something “different” at home like phở, spring rolls, vermicelli, or bánh xèo (Vietnamese savory crêpes), usually on the weekends.

Here are some pictures of very typical Vietnamese family dinner spreads. Brings back such memories!

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A typical Vietnamese dinner consists of:

Rice, of course. We prefer Vietnamese or Thai rice, which is white and a bit sticky.

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Meat/Seafood. We like to stir fry or cook with fish sauce

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Soup, usually vegetables soup. We often mix vegetables with shrimp.

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Sauce - soy sauce or fish sauce. Depends on the main course that we have the salty or sweet versions, or other versions for specific dishes.

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The following photos were taken at my aunt’s house when my mom and I visited a couple of months ago.

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Generally, a Vietnamese meal is served at once and shared among family members. There is no such thing as separate courses. Each person has a rice bowl, chopsticks, and a soup spoon. A typical meal consists of soup, vegetables, and meat/fish/seafood. White rice is the staple of the diet. We generally use fish sauce to enhance the taste. Very rarely will you see soy sauce on the table.

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These dishe...

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