Yes, I realise that title screams “get a life Elise”, but I entertain myself. And if you can’t entertain yourself what CAN you do?

I’m a self-professed soup-nazi and I was craving Pho like something fierce! I’d been meaning to make pho for ages but I was turned off by the prep involved in the stock.

I have two options for you in this recipe full chef version and the slightly longer recipe and the quickie.

I didn’t actually make the quick version (full disclaimer) BUT I imagine that it would still be super tasty, the secret is in the spices so as long as you let that simmer, you’re good to go!

So here it is! It’s incredibly simple (just some prep involved) and seriously I was impressed with the depth of flavour in the broth SO GOOD!

Haha, you gotta celebrate the wins! I often wing it in the kitchen so with the sometimes epic fails you really appreciate the winners 😉

Enjoy!

 

Healthy Pho

Ingredients (if making the stock from scratch)

1 onion halved
4 thumb of ginger, halved lengthwise
5-6 pounds of good beef bones, preferably leg and knuckle
1 kilo of beef meat – chuck, rump cut into large slices [optional]
3 litres of water
1 cinnamon stick, 1 T coriander seeds, 1 T fennel seeds, 5 whole star anise, 1 cardamom pod, 6 whole cloves and 1 T of black peppercorns – in mesh bag]

any veg you’d like to add just before serving – I used pak choi, broccoli and carrot
1/4 cup fish sauce
1 T of  sugar

Toppings:

2 limes, cut into wedges

2-3 chili peppers, sliced

2 big handfuls of fresh bean sprouts

fresh coriander to top

thai basil or mint to top

 

Directions:

Parboil the bones: Fill large pot with cool water. Boil water, and then add the bones, keeping the heat on high. Boil vigorously for 10 minutes. Drain, rinse the bones and rinse out the pot. Refill pot with bones and 3 litres of cool water. Bring to boil over high heat and lower to simmer. Using a ladle or a fine mesh strainer, remove any scum that rises to the top.

Boil broth: Add ginger, onion, spices, sugar, fish sauce and simmer uncovered for 1 1/2 hours. Strain broth and return the broth to the pot. Taste broth and adjust seasoning – this is a crucial step. If the broth’s flavour doesn’t punch you in the face with deliciousness, add 2 teaspoons more of fish sauce, and a bit of sugar. Keep doing this until the broth tastes perfect.

Prepare noodles & meat: Slice your beef as thin as possible and only add in just before you’re about to serve. Add any extra veg at this time too! Arrange all other ingredients on a platter for the table (herbs, bean sprouts, lime) for everyone to make their bowls how they like! Your guests will “assemble” their own bowls. Follow the directions on your package of noodles – there are many different sizes and widths of rice noodles, so make sure you read the directions. For some fresh rice noodles, just a quick 5 second blanch in hot water is all that’s needed.

Serving: Line up your soup bowls next to the stove. Fill each bowl with rice noodles and ladle the broth/meat/veg into each bowl. Serve immediately. Guests can garnish their own bowls as they wish.

Quick Version:

Ingredients:
5 L beef stock (salt reduced)
1 onion chopped
1 cinnamon stick, 1 T coriander seeds, 1 T fennel seeds, 5 whole star anise, 1 cardamom pod, 6 whole cloves and 1 T of black peppercorns – in mesh bag]
1 kilo of beef meat – chuck, rump cut into large slices [optional]
1 package of vermicelli bean thread noodles
2 T fish sauce (more to taste if needed)
1 T sugar
2 limes, cut into wedges
2-3 chili peppers, sliced
2 big handfuls of fresh bean sprouts
fresh coriander to top
Thai basil or mint to top
any veg you’d like to add just before serving – I used pak choi, broccoli and carrot
Directions:

Combine beef stock, cinnamon and star anise in a medium saucepan over high heat. Bring to the boil.

Reduce heat to medium and simmer for 5 minutes.Stir in lime juice and fish sauce.

Cook noodles according to packet then drain well.

Slice beef into thick slices

Slowly add into broth just before serving so you don’t over cook it! Add the extra veg if you wish at this stage too.

Divide noodles among serving bowls and then pour over the hot stock and serve with what ever toppings your heart desires!

 

Yum, I already want to make it again!