I ordered bun bo hue at Huong Giang Hue restaurant the other day. Stirring around in the bowl, I couldn't find any congealed blood. When the waiter stopped by my table to see if everything was all right, I complained about the missing ingredient. Bun bo hue just isn't bun bo hue without blood.
"Oh we didn't think you'd want it," she said. I simmered for a minute over this obvious racial profiling. What if I left the Swiss cheese off this lady's Reuben because she is Asian and everybody knows Asians don't eat cheese? She would be insulted. Right?
I was working myself up into a real frenzy when she reappeared with a big bowl of congealed blood cubes. I dumped them into my soup, along with all the sprouts and cabbage and torn-up herbs, and slurped up the spicy bowl of noodles. Pretty soon, everything was hunky-dory again. Maybe I was just hungry.
Huong Giang Hue is located in the shopping center at 11113 Bellaire just east of Hong Kong City Mall.