Thursday, June 14, 2012

Grocery Shopping in Ho Chi Minh City

Friends who have traveled with me abroad can attest that I splurge at the grocery. Yup, I'm a sucker for local food products, which I usually buy as pasalubong for the family.

I went grocery shopping at Sieu Thi Tax, which was on the 2nd floor of Saigon Tax Square This is really near the Parliament and Opera House (corner Le Loi and Nguyen Hue St.)

Here are some of the food stuff I bought:

1.     Vietnamese Coffee
You can’t leave Vietnam without buying one as pasalubong—even for yourself. There are numerous brands and flavors but according to the attendant, Viet Coffee is the best. 

Price: 66,300 VND (~Php 130) for 250g
There's a dripper that's bundled with it!

2.     Coconut Candy
I first saw coconut candies being made during the Mekong Delta tour. It's a local delicacy! These come in many flavors. All are quite yummy!  

Price: 31,800 VND (~Php 62)

3.     Recipe Mixes
This was my chance to take home and cook some of the dishes I've eaten around town! I don't cook so I let our helpers do it. Success!

Price: 22,000 VND (~Php 44) for one box

4.     Mung Bean Cake
This was a wildcard purchase. It looked interesting. I thought Mom would like it.

Price: 26,000 VND (~Php 52)

5.     Peanuts with Coconut
This is really good. It isn't salty nor is is sweet. It tastes peanuty and subtly milky.

Price: 51,300 VND (~Php 103)

6.     Saigon Girl Coconut Cookies
I bought this because I thought they were cute. That's all. 

Price: 50,000 VND (~Php 100)

7.     Dried Fruit Chips
This seemed to be the commonest chips around. Local “junk food” chips were nowhere to be seen—perhaps just in this grocery?

Price: 78,500 VND (~Php 156) for 500g

8.     Traditional Vietnamese Wafers
I bought this mostly for the packaging because it had pictures of Vietnam—some proof that I was really there. The wafers are quite hard and sticky, but equally good. 

Price: 64,800 VND (~Php 130) 

9.     Instant Vietnamese Noodles
Definitely my best grocery buy! I should have bought more! Of course, nothing beats the authentic noodles I had around... but this was good enough. 

Price: Ranging from 4,800 - 12,000 VND (~Php 9 - 24) 

I was tempted to buy some bouillon cubes, which I saw at the back end of the grocery. The problem was that the instructions were purely in Vietnamese and I wasn't sure what flavor they were. Too bad!

The cashew nuts were also tempting but I decided not to buy them.

For other worth-it things to buy around Ho Chi Minh City, click here

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