A bánh bèo (literally "water fern cake") is a variety of small steamed rice cake or rice pancake in Vietnamese cuisine. It is white in color and typically features a dimple in the center, which is filled with savory ingredients including chopped dried or fresh shrimp, scallions, mung bean paste, crispy fried shallots, fish sauce, rice vinegar, and oil. It is considered most typical of the cuisine of Huế, the ancient royal capital located in the center of Vietnam.
The dish's name is believed to derive from the fact that it is shaped like a water fern (bèo in Vietnamese). Bánh is a Vietnamese term translating loosely as "cake."
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