Food File: Banh Kep Xoi Cam

Vivid purple leaps out at me as I sit in the bus that is taking us home to Ho Chi Minh City from our amazing Mekong Delta wedding.

From the window of the bus I see wandering vendors carrying trays of something folded around brilliant purple … something that looks simply incredible.

My new friend Laurel and I press our noses to the bus window.

It looks like … crepes or waffles, stuffed with something purple. With something white in there too.

We have to eat it.

The bus is stuck in a line of traffic waiting for a ferry.

I risk missing my ride home. I get off the bus to buy some purple things.

Mekong Delta crepes

Oh my. Warm coconut waffle-crepe wrapped around purple sticky rice and sugared shredded coconut. Mouth heaven.

The vendor told Darling Man the crepe was called bánh kẹp xôi cẩm. Darling Man translates the name into “folded cake with magenta sticky rice”.

I revel in the taste of purple sticky rice, which I’ve never tasted before because Darling Man says it’s usually artificially coloured. (Oh, the horror!). Traditionally, purple sticky rice was coloured with the leaves of the magenta plant but these days Darling Man says it’s rare that people still use leaves. Especially when the rice ends up as eye-shockingly purple as this.

Mekong Delta crepes

I love finding quirky local food specialties like these colourful Mekong Delta crepes.

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9 years ago

By: Barbara

A career girl who dropped out, traveled, found love, and never got around to going home again. Now wrangling a cross-cultural relationship and two third culture kids.


  1. Angela says:

    I don’t even care the rice is artificially colored, it looks so fun! Was it as good as it looks?

  2. Maria says:

    Color that would stop me in my tracks! Next time I’m out that way, I’ll definitely look for these. WoW!

  3. Snap says:

    The look absolutely addictive!…and my favourite colour too.
    Snap recently posted..Road Trip – Pak Chong to Khon Kaen

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