Today's post is an ode to the seafood vendors on Man Thai beach.
Danang Beach is a long glorious strip of coast – white sand that stretches as far as the eye can see, with a backdrop of mountains and a chameleon-like peninsula called Son Tra at one end.
At the North end of the beach, the white sand turns brown and the open water curves into a protected cove where the coracle basket boats and fishing vessels are moored.
This isn't 'tourist beach' any more – this is a small fishing community, and early mornings and sunset it turns into a tiny kerbside market selling what is literally the catch of the day or night
Danang is famous for its squid……and for variety of fresh and live seafood.
At night the inky sea is dotted with fishing boats, their bright white lights strafing the surface of the sea attracting cuttlefish and squid.
It's always fresh here, and really high quality, but this squid was so awesome, it stopped me in my tracks
Normally the squid are cleaned and brought to the markets or sold kerbside each morning and evening.
Upon closer inspection the speckles and spots under its skin were appearing and vanishing as if by magic. This squid was alive – and it was an incredible sight.
In Vietnam, steaming is a very popular form of cooking.
It's light, healthy and fast – a simple method that requires absolute freshness of the product in order to succeed.
Steamed fish, steamed chicken, steamed goat, steamed prawns and fish – all are highly sought after and eagerly consumed with loads of fresh herbs and vegetables and tasty dipping sauces.
Try doing a "Vietnamese" menu at home with steamed meat and fish and it'll be a disaster unless you take the same care about ingredients.
In Vietnam a high premium is put on getting food alive, or freshly killed.
Frozen food and stuff that's been lying in a fridge for a few days just isn't an option.
Steam something that was alive an hour or two ago – wow.
THAT'S texture and flavour to die for.
Popular accompaniments are thinly sliced green banana with their slightly chalky texture and astringent taste, and sliced green star fruit which are tart and refreshing.
Mint is the fresh herb of choice with steamed squid, and you generally get plenty of it, picked, washed and vibrantly alive.
We get a lot of call for steamed squid at the resort as well.
Here's a photo of 'squid steamed with five flavours that I took as we were plating a family style dinner.
What's your favourite way to eat squid?