Bánh Lá Mơ

Bánh lá mơ is a Vietnamese cake hailing from the Mekong Delta, with rice flour and mơ leaves as the main ingredients.

Lastest Updated January 6, 2024
Verified by A-Z Cuisines Team
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Home » Dishes A-Z » Bánh Lá Mơ

Fact: Bánh lá mơ is made with the leaves of the mơ plant, which is also known as cây thúi địch (“fart plant”).

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Basic Information

Bánh Lá Mơ: Basic Information

Pronunciation

/bahn lah moh/

Alternative Name(s)

Bánh lá mít

Dish Type

Cakes and pastries, steamed dishes, snacks

Course

Non-course dish

Mealtime

Anytime

Popular Variations

No
Origin and Region

Bánh Lá Mơ: Origin and Region

Origin

Vietnam

Continent’s Region

Southeast Asia

Country’s Region

Mekong Delta

Associated Region

Unspecified
Vietnam Map
Ingredients and Preparation

Bánh Lá Mơ: Ingredients and Preparation

Main Ingredients

Rice flour, tapioca flour, and mơ leaves

Main Cooking Method

Steaming

Preparation Process

Preparing the dough, spreading pieces of dough on jackfruit leaves, steaming bánh lá mơ until fragrant, removing bánh lá mơ from the leaves.
A Deep Dive

Bánh Lá Mơ: A Deep Dive

Cultural Significance

Unique cake from the Mekong Delta

Taste

Sweet

Texture

Soft, chewy

Aroma

Uniquely vegetal

Color

Dark green, slightly translucent

Serving Style

Eaten with hands

Serving Temperature

Warm or at room temperature

Accompaniment

Coconut milk, sesame seeds, roasted peanuts

Occasions

On any occasions

Seasons

Year-round

Special Diets

Gluten-free, vegetarian, vegan

Calories

Unspecified

Popularity

Mekong Delta

Popular Similar Dishes

Bánh Ít

Popular Dining Area

Local households, street vendors, restaurants

Bánh lá mơ is a traditional Vietnamese steamed cake found in the Mekong Delta. It is made from rice flour, tapioca flour, sugar, and juice extracted from the leaves of the mơ or mơ lông plant (Paederia lanuginosa).

Banh La Mo Infographic

People prepare bánh lá mơ by spreading a thin layer of dough on a jackfruit or banana leaf, steaming it, then removing the cake and serving it with coconut milk, toasted sesame seeds, and roasted peanuts.

The mơ plant is sometimes called by the interesting name cây thúi địch (“farting plant”) due to the distinct smell the leaves release when being crushed.

However, bánh lá mơ has an addictive flavor that is unlike regular sweets. Due to the wrappings, this cake is also called bánh lá mít (“cake in jackfruit leaves”).

Read on to discover more interesting facts about this exotic Vietnamese cake and street food, such as its advantages, disadvantages, and common concerns. I will also suggest similar dishes for further experiences with Vietnamese cakes.

Key Points

  • Bánh lá mơ is a Vietnamese cake unique to the Mekong Delta.
  • The main ingredients of bánh lá mơ are rice flour and leaves from the mơ plant, a local plant.
  • Bánh lá mơ is made by spreading the dough on jackfruit leaves and steaming them until fragrant.
  • Bánh lá mơ is usually served with coconut milk.

Pros and Cons of Eating Bánh Lá Mơ

Bánh lá mơ comes with the following strengths and weaknesses.

Pros

  • Unique Flavor: Thanks to mơ leaves, bánh lá mơ boasts a distinct flavor that is not found in other types of cakes.
  • Cultural Significance: Bánh lá mơ is a traditional Vietnamese cake from the Mekong Delta, representing the region’s rustic charm and natural bounty.
  • Natural Ingredients: Compared to processed snacks, bánh lá mơ is healthier since it incorporates natural ingredients and no preservatives.

Cons

  • Availability: Outside of Vietnam, it may be difficult to find authentic bánh lá mơ.
  • Perishability: Since bánh lá mơ is made without preservatives and with fresh ingredients, bánh lá mơ may not have a long shelf life and can spoil if not consumed quickly.
  • Preparation Time: The process of making bánh lá mơ can take a great deal of time and effort.

After learning about these advantages and disadvantages, why don’t you check out the FAQs section to discover other aspects of bánh lá mơ?

Bánh Lá Mơ FAQs

Yes, bánh lá mơ is a vegan-friendly cake and suitable for all plant-based diets.

Yes, traditional bánh lá mơ is gluten-free as long as it isn’t contaminated with gluten during the preparation process.

You can refrigerate bánh lá mơ for 2 – 3 days. To reheat it, you can steam it or microwave it with a small cup of water for moisture.

Similar Dishes of Bánh Lá Mơ

Banh It

Bánh ít is a popular Vietnamese cake made from glutinous rice flour and mung bean using a steaming method.

Truc Tran (Kris)

Truc Tran (Kris)

Senior Food Editor

Expertise

Home Cooking, Meal Planning, Recipe Development, Baking and Pastry, Food Editor, Cooking-video Maker, Vietnamese Food Evaluation Expert

Education

  • Hospitality (Commercial Cookery) at TasTAFE
  • Culinary Arts at Kendall College (Australia Branch in Sydney)
  • Vietnamese Cuisine Head Chef at HNAAu School (Vietnam, International Joint Training Program)

Truc Tran (Kris), an experienced food writer and editor, is great at exploring and describing global cuisines, from simple street food to fancy dining. In her writing, she skillfully mixes different flavors, cooking methods, and culinary traditions, showing the unique character of various cultures through their food and drinks. On azcuisines.com, Kris highlights her knowledge, especially in Asian cuisine and worldwide traditional dishes.

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