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May 30, 2009 08:47 AM

looking for broken rice

while in new york last week, i had a great dish of broken rice and pork at baogette. i want to recreate it, but am unable to find broken rice, also known as rice bits, basically, rice seconds. i've been to a japanese and a korean grocery. any suggestions?

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  1. Not kidding......but maybe you can "break" your own.

    2 Replies
    1. re: monku

      I am pretty sure that is what most Viet places do, place the rice in a spice grinder.

      1. re: A5 KOBE

        I doubt it, since they sell enormous sacks of broken rice at the markets. It's certainly possible that someone else up the VAT chain has done something like that on a larger scale, but I doubt they use spice grinders at com tam places.

    2. "any suggestions?"

      Yes, go to a Vietnamese grocery store.

      1. Any Asian grocery that has a decent Vietnamese presence. Obviously any one of them in Westminster will carry them. Perhaps ABC on Magnolia and Bolsa?

        1. Any Vietnamese grocery store will have it, and perhaps some Thai places. You can also check 99 Ranch Markets (assuming you are in LA, the nearest is on Victory and Sepulveda in Van Nuys, but they are all over the San Gabriel Valley and OC).

          Look for the words "gạo tấm" on the package -- "gạo" means uncooked rice, and "tấm" means "sheet" (don't ask me why). When it is cooked, it becomes "cơm tấm".

          In the meantime, there are restaurants in the San Gabriel Valley and down here in OC that specialise in it. Most people like Com Tam Tran Quy Cap (on McFadden in Garden Grove), though I also like Com Tam Thuan Kieu, with locations on Brookhurst and 15th in Garden Grove, on Magnolia and Bolsa in Westminster/Midway City, and on Valley Blvd. in San Gabriel. You can get cơm tấm with any number of toppings, generally three or four toppings for about $5-$6, seven or eight toppings for $8-$10, and it always comes with pickled vegetables, fresh cucumber, fresh chilies, dipping sauce and soup. A huge meal for $6 and much, much cheaper than making it at home.

          1. I found it in my local grocery store (I think it was Stop and Shop - Rockland county) and bought it by mistake. It cooks up a little mushy. I considered tossing it until I saw all the raves on this site. Looks like I've got something special and need to learn how to cook it properly!