In the comments, on what might just be Saigon’s best sandwich stall holder, reader Matt wrote, "I dont think she works on Sunday." Matt, I don’t think she does either. I waded through the hellish 7pm Sunday di choi traffic for a repeat fix and, like you, came up empty and worried. A local xe om driver confirmed she doesn’t do sarnies on the Lord’s day. Shit. Now, I don’t know about you, but if I set out to buy something edible and find it unavailable I get a mite tetchy, determined tetchy, but tetchy all the same. In a situation like this you need local knowledge. The xe om driver thinks he knows another spot. We head north up Cach Mang Thang Tham street.
We find this stall on the right hand side of the mega-long Cach Mang Thang Tham street about 100 metres before the turning into To Hien Thanh street. If you meld this videocast with the first half of this videocast you’ll cover much the same turf. This seller flogs a variety of sandwiches – including traditional pate, grilled minced pork balls and canned sardine sarnies – from her confusingly named hotdog stall, but it’s banh mi xiu mai I want to try tonight. Xui mai is the spicy minced pork balls in tomato sauce you can see warming in the hotpot above. More on xiu mai earlier today.
Topped with cucumber, coriander, hot sauce, freshly chopped strands of red chilli and wrapped inside a page from an old copy of the Vietnam Yellow Pages, it makes for a stunning 7,000VD sandwich. The chilli kicks some serious volts down your gob and you might want to forego these if you’re not into near death experiences. But the xiu mai itself is a soft, sweet, hot, hit. A few more pictures here.
More sarnies please. They’re grrrreat. Will definitely be hunting down more banh mi xiu mai.