Boi p'ruc for sale in A Luoi
Ingredients to create this forest pepper and leaves salt typically include fine salt + a' soar seeds + a' soar leaves + wild peppers + wild galangal root... Depending on the ratio of spices, the flavor will be different.
To make this unique salt dish, most of the ingredients must be collected from the forest. This work takes place all year round. For example, waiting until June for old, fragrant a' soar leaves to be picked and dried at home; finding a' moan seeds in August; harvesting chili from May to September.
The hardest part is finding a' moan seeds - a kind of pepper-like seed with a strong aroma but no spicy taste. The a' moan tree is very tall and grows in the area bordering Laos, so the people have to go far into the forest to find it.
A' soar seed is called mac khen in the Northwest. This tree gives fragrant flower clusters. After picking the green fruits, they must be dried and preserved to keep for a long time. After pounding and roasting the seeds, the essential oil’s fragrance spreads. The aroma is like orange peels but is lighter and softer. A' Soar is also mixed with fish and meat for roasting to create a delicious flavor for the dish. A' Soar seeds have the effect of stimulating digestion and reducing joint pain. In this seed, there are antibacterial substances that increase the body's resistance.
The chili used for this salt is usually a chili that grows in the forest with fruits small like grains of rice.This type of chili is called the crested chili pepper, and it has a spicy and aromatic taste. Currently, some families have taken this type of chili to propagate in their home gardens. They start planting in February and gradually harvest after 3-4 months.
The leaves and forest fruits are pounded and roasted, mixed with chili, salt, and spices to produce a spicy and aromatic salt. After cooling, it will be put in a container to use and can be stored for 1-3 months. If guests eat immediately, fresh chili and leaves will be crushed right at mealtime.
According to Mr. Vien Xuan Minh, an elder in A Roang, Ta Oi cuisine is mostly grilled dishes, so mixing with boi p'ruc will create a distinctive aroma. Not only Ta Oi people, other ethnic minorities also use this spice to dip meat, chicken, fish, and rice... The highland salt dip is a specialty sold at markets, fairs, and festivals and is very popular. In the meals to welcome guests to the house, the new rice festival, the Ta Oi people pound the boi p'ruc (dried or fresh) to make the meal more flavorful.
Vien Dang Phu, manager of Huong Danh homestay in A Roang commune (A Luoi), said that in 2022, he has sold more than 1,000 jars of boi p'ruc to customers throughout the country. Even foreign tourists buy the salt to bring home as gifts. He also named his products Golden boy to identify the brand with information and phone numbers for customers to contact and order.
Let’s see how this typical highland salt is made with Thua Thien Hue Online:
The leaves, tubers and seeds are picked from the forest. Some visitors also follow the local people to enjoy the experience
Picked a' soar leaves must be dried, other seeds are also dried to preserve for a long time
A' soar seeds are cleaned and mixed with salt and other spices in an appropriate ratio
The host will add or remove a few ingredients accordingly to the taste of the guests
Children participate in the process with their grandparents and parents, to learn to recognize the effects of forest leaves and roots
This mixture is roasted to increase the flavor and preserve for a long time
The finished product
The welcome meal always has bamboo rice and boi p'ruc
Mountain cuisine rich in nature and mountain flavors always attracts tourists
Buying A Luoi specialty salt at A Luoi market stall
By ANH TUE