Vietnamese Sour Soup of Minty Indian Taro (Canh chua bạc hà)

Vietnamese Sour Soup of Minty Indian Taro (Canh chua bạc hà)

by tonytran2015 (Melbourne, Australia).

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(Blog No.75).

#Canh chua. #Bac Ha, #Canh chua Bac Ha, #Indian taro, #Minty taro, #Colocasia gigantea, #sour soup, #toxic.

1. Vietnamese Sour Soup of Minty (Indian) Taro.

Figure: Sour soup of Minty Indian Taro (Vietnamese Canh chua bạc hà) in 200 ml bowl.

Figure 2: Sour soup of Minty Indian Taro (Vietnamese Canh chua bạc hà) in 200 ml bowl.

Called Canh chua Bac Ha in Vietnamese.

Figure 3: Soup of Bean Shoots in Minty Indian taro.

Sour soup of Minty (Indian) Taro (Vietnamese canh chua bạc hà) is quite tasty, healthy and nutritious.


There are many Vietnamese TV and Internet news reports that eating this soup may raise the level of uric acid in your body [3,4]. You may need to be aware of this problem.

2. Preparation.

It is prepared by long boiling the slanted slices of stalks of the plant Colocasia gigantea (also called giant elephant ear or Indian taro) with acidic tamarind fruits (Vietnamese trái Me) and small anounts of other (optional and depending on your prefered tastes) herbs until they soften and the water becomes slightly brown, tasty and sour (acidic). The acid from tamarind fruits dissolves the small needle shape crystals of calcium oxalate in the stems of Colocasia gigantea. However, it should be noted that uncooked Taro parts may be toxic.

The sour soup is acidic and has a lot of Calcium Oxalate. It is obvious that no copper should come into contact with the soup.

Figure: Indian taro (Colocasia gigantea), from Wikipedia,, file: 7621 qsbg11mar.jpg, licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike,

Colocasia gigantea (also called giant elephant ear or Indian taro) is a 1.5–3 m tall herb with a large, fibrous stalk. Its relation to Alocasia odora in the same family of Arum plants needs to be clarified.

Green Bạc Hà (Colocasia gigantea ) can be obtained from

WARNING: Other parts (raw or cooked) of the plant are mildly to moderately toxic. Other similar Arum plants in the same family are toxic. Proper learning is required to IDENTIFY the plant and to prepare this soup.

3. Where to find it.

It is an inexpensive dish (costing 4000VND =20cUS in 2017) in Vietnam (in Saigon). It is included in the inexpensive meal outlets (Cơm Bình Dân, Cơm Sinh Viên, Cơm Văn Phòng) sold to Workers, Students, Office Workers, Neighbour Resident.

I don’t know how much it would cost in a Vietnamese restaurant outside Vietnam. It may cost you $4.00US (?).






Related HOW TO blogs:

Rice as emergency food., posted December 24, 2016


Soup of parsnips and tomatoes

Soup of Bitter gourds infilled with pestled pork (Canh khố qua dồn thịt heo).


Smashed mung bean (green) peas in crushed ice, posted February 03, 2018


Authentic noodle soup with pork ribs or barbecue pork, posted March 06, 2018

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