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Cha ruoi is a popular meal in Hanoi when the autumn leaves turn yellow.

Cha ruoi is not available all year round. Ruoi is a type of sand worm that can only be found from the end of September to the middle of October. The short season is why Hanoians regard cha ruoi as a special but expensive gift from nature.

The sand worm doesn’t live in Hanoi – it lives in the mangroves and wetlands along the coast. In the capital, cha ruoi is a delicacy this time of year – the delicious smell of it cooking is very pervasive, a temptation to passers-by. The combination of fried ruoi and egg is irresistible. It is usually served with vermicelli, salad and fish sauce.
The cool change of autumn is coming, so it’s about time to taste cha ruoi and enjoy the sweet gift of nature.

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