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Google Doodle celebrates Vietnamese ‘banh mi’

Tuesday, March 24, 2020, 15:21 GMT+7
Google Doodle celebrates Vietnamese ‘banh mi’
An animation of Vietnamese 'banh mi' is displayed on Google's homepage on March 24, 2020.

Google Doodle, a temporary alteration of the logo on Google's homepages, on Tuesday featured an animation of banh mi, the popular Vietnamese street food sandwich that is a melting pot of cultures and savory ingredients.

Banh mi literally means ‘bread’ and is based on a type of baguette that was introduced to Vietnam in the mid-19th century.

The animated banh mi Doodle was rolled out in Vietnam and more than ten other countries including the United States, Canada, Singapore, France, Australia and Switzerland, celebrating the addition of the banh mi entry into the Oxford English Dictionary nine years ago on March 24.

Google's animated Doodle shows the making of a typical banh mi. It begins with a thin-crusted baguette being split lengthwise and dressed with condiments such as chili sauce, seasoning sauce, and mayonnaise. 

It is then filled with a wide variety of savory ingredients, such as ham, cucumber slices, cilantro, and pickled carrots.

A regular loaf of 'banh mi thit.' Photo: Chanh Niem / Tuoi Tre

A regular loaf of 'banh mi thit.' Photo: Chanh Niem / Tuoi Tre

“A loaf of Vietnam’s banh mi is a combination of Vietnamese and French cultures,” Google wrote in a passage introducing banh mi.

“Over time, bread continues to be developed and modified with many new forms and ways of combining ingredients, meeting the culinary and taste needs of Vietnamese people.”

Vietnamese people consider banh mi as both a convenient meal to take away and a main or side dish that is full of nutrients.

On this occasion, the Ho Chi Minh City Department of Tourism has also organized a number of activities in the city, featuring culinary experts and celebrities, to further promote banh mi.

In addition, on Tuesday, a number of food delivery apps are also offering several discounts related to banh mi.

Miss Universe Vietnam 2017 H’Hen Nie dons the “banh mi” costume at a press meeting in Ho Chi Minh City November 21, 2018. Photo: Tuoi Tre

Miss Universe Vietnam 2017 H’Hen Nie dons the 'banh mi' costume at a press meeting in Ho Chi Minh City November 21, 2018. Photo: Tuoi Tre

Besides Google and Oxford English Dictionary, many international culinary and media experts have also given recognition to Vietnam’s banh mi.

A story run in The Guardian about the world's best street food and written by foodie Richard Johnson in 2012 ranked banh mi in second.

The dish was also praised by the BBC’s correspondent David Farley as “the best sandwich in the world” in 2014, and by the late celebrity chef Anthony Bourdain in the show ‘Anthony Bourdain: No Reservations’ on CNN.

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