Bringing Tet flavor to Van Lang University

(VLU, 31/01/2022– Baking with me is not a job but a habit that has been formed from a very young age.” Formerly a student at the University of Medicine and Pharmacy, cake artist Nguyen Thi Hien Minh gave up her job as a pharmacist and decided to bring her "habit" into a passion, a part that she would stick with for a long time.

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Cake artist Tran Thi Hien Minh
Expert in the field of Vietnamese traditional cake making
Author of the book Flavor of Home Kitchen
Owner of the youtube channel Bep Co Minh with more than 206,000 followers


DREAM OF ELEVATING THE VIETNAME CAKES POSITION

When the quality of life is improved, people's needs are also growing, becoming richer and more demanding. However, where is Vietnamese cuisine on the "international table"? It is not only a question of national pride, but the formula of young people in beautiful knowledge work and bearing the image of Vietnam and the five continents. We know rice cakes as a traditional Korean dish, or the previous dish with Japanese mochi skills, etc., but have we ever sat back and watched our grandmother and mother meticulously pack each banh chung and being intrigued?

“The first ones were made by her with her family as a child. So baking with her is not a job but a habit formed from a very young age. Formerly a student at the University of Medicine and Pharmacy, Ms. Nguyen Thi Hien Minh gave up her job and decided to bring her "habit" into a passion, a part that would stick with her later. Bakery artist Tran Thi Hien Minh recalled: “She started with opening a restaurant and business, then followed her career seeking and accumulating more knowledge and experience. Then she passed that knowledge on to the information community through classroom teaching hours, television broadcasts and private youtube channels. ”

Many people mistakenly believe that Vietnamese cuisine is mostly simple, not fussy, so it is also less special. Therefore, the responsibility of culinary artists like Ms. Tran Thi Hien Minh is even heavier. “She wants her Vietnamese cakes to be enhanced, not simple but in fact delicate. In sticky rice, beans, each layer of green leaves encapsulates the feelings of grandmother and mother in it."

In order to help people see the subtleties of Vietnamese cakes, she constantly tinkers, learns and finds her own stories and unique flavors of each type of cake. She learned how to be creative and invest in making Vietnamese cakes more attractive, eye-catching and sophisticated like a five-star hotel. Artist Hien Minh once shared that she supports the creation of a formal and classy Vietnamese cuisine appearance, but in terms of taste, she herself always wants to keep the originality of each traditional dish, so even after many generations, over the years, the next generation still knows the inherent flavor of the homeland.

Those who follow Bep Co Minh channel will surely see that the happiness and pride of Vietnamese cuisine is always present. With her patience, gentleness and slowness, Ms. Hien Minh has helped hundreds of thousands of followers relive the love of Vietnamese cakes, arousing the desire to understand, to make a Vietnamese cake, a delicious dish. Homeland flavor in the hustle and bustle of modern life. For artisan Hien Minh, baking has many meanings, but the most meaningful one is helping people who don't have much time to learn how to make their favorite dishes, sharing warm joy with their family and friends, or simply enjoy a little pride when making your own cake.

Bring the New Year’s flavor to VLU

When the Trade Union of Van Lang University to organize the contest "Packing banh chung and banh tet" to celebrate the Lunar New Year, cake artist Tran Thi Hien Minh was invited to participate as both an instructor, as well as the judge.

Appearing in a traditional ao dai, artist Hien Minh explains step by step how to pack a plump and square banh chung. Her clear, step-by-step approach and detailed explanations help teachers quickly grasp the focus and implement it easily.

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Ms. Hien Minh said that she is very happy to see that Van Lang University can organize a meaningful event like this for officials, lecturers and staff during the epidemic situation. In the past, many activities have not been able to return to the regular cycle. It was even more fun when the contest had many young faces sharing that this was also the first time theyI personally wrapped a traditional Vietnamese cake. “In today's society, everyone is busy. Sitting together, wrapping a cake is not as easy as it used to be. Yet Van Lang University has done that. That is really something to appreciate.” – shared by the artist.

In the bustling atmosphere of the last days of December, Trade Union members of Van Lang shared laughter and talk, joining hands to make the most beautiful pairs of banh chung and banh tet. There is a full, square cake; there is one that has not been tightly packed, so it is still loose, the wire is not tight ; but each cake made is encouraged by the artisan, a beautiful memory that connects colleagues and brothers.

vlu mang huong tet den van lang cCake Artist Hien Minh and the Executive Committee of the Trade Union surveyed and commented on the finished product of each competition team.

SPECIAL FAITH FROM HER SON

Few people know that the son of cake artist Tran Thi Hien Minh, Mr. Ho Tran Minh Khoa is an alumnus of Course 20 of Architecture at Van Lang University. Perhaps, it was the bond between her son and Van Lang early on that caused Hien Minh's affectionate feelings when she once again visited here as a guide and judge.

Artisan Hien Minh recalled: “When taking the university entrance exam, Khoa chose to pursue Architecture and only Architecture. VLU is not the first aspiration, but the choice with no regrets of both her and her friends." She said that she once suggested that her son could retake the exam next year if he wanted to, but he refused because he was confident that VLU was a good environment, enthusiastic teachers, ready to help and respond to his need to learn and develop his future.

On the day of attending her son's Graduation Ceremony, she couldn't help but be touched by the fact that her son had grown up, touched by the dignified atmosphere, the spirit of respecting each student, the student's family, and completely peace of mind when she has sent her son to this school for 5 years at university.

For Ms. Hien Minh, sharing with everyone Vietnamese cakes in particular as well as traditional dishes in general is a happiness. That is happiness which needs to be replicated to add more joy. Thank you artist Hien Minh for bringing Tet flavor to Van Lang. Wishing you and your family a warm Lunar New Year. Wishing Van Lang community a new year of success. Wish each of us, whoever it is, whether near or far, still be happy with the warmth of the homeland.

Reporter: Hoai An - Hoai Anh
Translated by An Pham


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