“Cha ca” is a favourite dish of Hanoian. Located in Cha Ca street, Cha ca La Vong (”cha ca” means grilled fish) is the famous restaurant to many Hanoian as well as visitors from all over the world.  The food is supposed to have been created by the Doan family. According to Mrs. Ngo Thi Tinh (a descendant of the 4th generation of the family), the family started the business of selling “cha ca” to earn money to support the family members and to have a meeting place for the Vietnamese people who wanted to fight against French colonialism.

  • Prep time: 10 mins
  • Cook time: 20 mins
  • Total time: 30 mins
  • Serves: 4-6




  • Fresh lang fish: 600g
  • Spring onion: 300g
  • Dill: 200g
  • Peanuts: 100g
  • Rice noodles: 500g
  • Cooking oil: 1 litre
  • Milled galangal: 300g
  • Shrimp paste: 100g
  • Lemon: 1
  • Sugar: 50g
  • Seasoning powder: 1tsp
  • Chilli: 2
  • Turmeric: 1 Fermented cold rice: 2tbsp
  • Herbs




For the sauce

  • Mix 3 tablespoons of shrimp paste with
    1/2 teaspoon of sugar, tablespoon of lemon juice and chopped chilli in a bowl.

For the “Cha Ca La Vong”

  • Clean the fish and cut into square pieces, set aside.
  • Mill the fermented cold rice, galangal and peeled turmeric to get the juice.
  • Marinate the fish in the juice with 1 teaspoon of shrimp paste, 1 tablespoon of sugar and 1 tablespoon of seasoning powder for about 60 minutes.
  • Grill until the fish is well done and turns yellow.
  • Fry the grilled fish with spring onions and dill.
  • Present the fish on a plate. Serve with roasted peanuts and rice noodles.