Dish of the Day: Dried Apricot (O Mai)
If you enjoy eating dry and pickled fruit as snacks, then you will have heard of the Dried Apricot, also known as O Mai. It’s a must-have snack at home whenever you’re watching TV, or doing work.
What are Dried Apricots (O Mai)?
This Vietnamese street snack has pretty basic ingredients. It’s made of apricot fruits that are doused with either saltwater or sugar water for a couple of hours before it is naturally dried in the sun for a few days.
These dried apricots are then brought to the market where they are sold to shop owners where they will either be sold as packets or in bulk. This snack is usually enjoyed over tea by most Vietnamese people.
The Story Behind The Snack
The O Mai is a speciality product of the Hanoi region in Vietnam. It is traditionally made and served as a snack to guests during the Lunar New Year.
The O Mai can be made with different kinds of dried fruits. But the most commonly used fruits are plum, apricot, peach, star fruit, tamarind, kumquat, and pineapple.
Apricot is more common compared to other fruits as it is often available all year round. O Mai can also be mixed with sugar, salt, lime, chilli, and ginger before they are dried. If you ever get the chance to visit Hanoi, Hang Duong Street is where you can find various kinds of O Mai.
Because the O Mai is a well sought after snack, the Vietnamese have emphasised on the quality of O Mai. The process of making a good quality batch of dried apricot is said to be a lengthy process, as the seller has to start by picking only the best quality apricots to be processed. During the cooking process, the heat and the amount of sugar also play an important role in producing a high-quality batch of dried apricots.
The Nutritional Content of Dried Apricot (O Mai)
Apricot is known to have a high content of antioxidants that are good for your health. Apricots are also high in potassium, which may promote eye health and a healthy liver. Experts also believe that apricots can help maintain healthy and glowing skin, as well as develop a healthy gut environment.
It is believed that snacking on dried fruits is always a better option than snacking on junk food, such as cracker or crisp. This is because junk food usually contains high sodium content and artificial chemicals.
Where can you get Dried Apricot (O Mai) in Malaysia?
Dried fruit is widely sold in Malaysia, especially in Chinese speciality stores. You can often find these places in shopping malls and night markets.
If you are looking for the O Mai specifically, you can make your way to Shia’s Homemade Granola in Georgetown. There, they sell the O Mai from RM10 for 200g.
If you want to look for more Vietnamese street snacks without having to leave the comforts of your own home, download the foodpanda app and make your order using the app today! It’s easy and hassle-free.
Article Written By Anna
Anna is an absolute foodie, and lives by the motto that food is happiness. She is a writer by day and a gamer by night. She believes that good food comes from all over and is constantly amazed by the passion and dedication it takes to make food that warms the soul.