Thit kho tau (Vietnamese Braised Pork and Boiled Eggs) or thit kho hot vit (Vietnamese Braised Pork and Boiled Duck Eggs as in Vietnam we use both chicken eggs and duck eggs in cooking) is a classic dish in Vietnamese’s daily meal but it’s also a must-have dish to enjoy during the lunar new year as a tradition. With the new year fast approaching, most of the families in Vietnam are preparing a big pot of thit kho tau to enjoy for at least the first three days of new year.
The secret of cooking this dish perfectly includes: marinating the pork well, be sure the fat of the pork looks translucent, the meat is really tender but not overly soft to prevent it from breaking apart; and the eggs have a beautiful amber color. Thit kho tau has a wonderful light aroma of coconut juice, a hint of saltiness from the fish sauce and the mild sweetness of coconut juice surrounded by the fragrance of garlic, shallots and fresh ground pepper.
My first impression of “Thit kho tau” was that it is Chinese (as “Tau” is a slang meaning China) style but after careful research, I found out this dish is 100% Vietnamese. It actually originated from the South of Vietnam. Based on the famous writer Binh Nguyen Loc, the word “Tau” means “delicate” compare to the rivers Cai Tau Thuong and Cai Tau Ha are the two rivers that have brackish water (somewhat salty). Thit kho tau translates to “Braised Pork in Light Sauce”.
Thit kho tau, omelet, and boiled water are always my favorite. My mum says when I was little, the most difficult thing on earth is to feed me, and it took me 2 hours to finish a bowl of rice. But once she gave me thit kho tau, I could did it as fast as a rocket.
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