How sacred cake for worship in Hanoi is made
Nhat Minh 08:34, 2020/07/09
Oan is an indispensable offering on the altar of many Vietnamese families and temples on special occasions.

In Hanoi, among the bakeries who make Oan, truncated-cone-shaped cakes, Tinh Ngoc cake is the most famous brand, inheriting the tradition of Dong Thinh confectionery shop since 1954.

 Dong Thinh confectionery is owned by the family of Dao Thi Loan, 80 years old, and the inheritor is now Loan’s eldest daughter who is living at 324 Thuy Khue street, Tay Ho district, with more than 60 years of experience in making Oan.

 This family business has undergone many upheavals in its 60-year history. It was first merged into a state-owned confectionery cooperative, then split off and registered the Tinh Ngoc brand for the reinstated business. Withstanding the passage of time, the quality and appearance of the Oan cakes made by this family have not changed.

 The first step of making Oan is to boil a syrup made of white sugar and water and then cool it down. The syrup is then mixed with grapefruit flower oil and vanilla, boiled again until the sugar mixture crystallizes and gets a milky white color.

 The sugar mixture is then blended with glutinous rice flour. The proportion of sugar mixture to be blended with glutinous rice flour remains a secret kept among the family members. Depending on the weather, the artisans adjust the content of ingredients to obtain the products which fits their standards of quality. 

 Moulds for making Oan are often made from wood and there are about 10 different sizes of moulds. After being taken out from the mould, pieces of Oan are firm. Then, they are wrapped in colorful cellophane with a gold label on the top.

 Each cast is engraved with the dragon and phoenix dance motifs, meaning reverence and holiness, and expressing the quintessence of ancient Hanoi.

 Loan’s family also makes large-size Oan with finicky decoration, for Buddhist worshiping. Tinh Ngoc Oan can keep delicious taste for a month.

 When registering the product’s trademark, Loan took the name “Tinh Ngoc”, meaning “pure and beautiful”.

 Tinh Ngoc Oan is offered in most of temples and pagodas in the North, proving the reputation of a Hanoi’s delicacy. 

Photos: Hoai Giang (Kinh te & Do thi)

TAG: Oan cakes truncated-cone-shaped cakes Tinh Ngoc Oan
Other news
11:59, 2020/59/19
Vietnam accords red carpet welcome to Japan PM Suga
At the invitation of Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc, Japanese Prime Minister Suga Yoshihide and his spouse are on a visit in Vietnam from October 18 – 20.
16:54, 2020/54/06
Hanoi dismantles Formula One race track infrastructure
The Vietnam Grand Prix postponement was aimed at ensuring the health and safety of the organizers, drivers and spectators.
13:48, 2020/48/27
Hanoi Old Quarter tinged with spectacular reddish hues during Mid-Autumn Festival
Hanoians are flocking to the Old Quarter streets where the festival atmosphere is the most striking in the days prior to the Mid-Autumn Festival yet complying with measures to prevent Covid-19.
16:46, 2020/46/21
Colorful Hanoi’s street with mid-autumn toys and decorations
Hanoi's young people are flocking to Hang Ma street at weekends where mid-autumn decorations and toys are sold in the days prior to the festival.
07:45, 2020/45/17
Long Bien bridge - witness of Hanoi's history
When coming to Long Bien Bridge at sunrise, tourists can enjoy early morning fresh air and have chance to explore one of the biggest and busiest fruit markets of Hanoi.
17:46, 2020/46/02
Flag raising ceremony in Ba Dinh Square to mark National Day
At 6am every day, the flag raising ceremony takes place in front of the Ho Chi Minh Mausoleum.