THE pho is not only a unique dish, it is steeped in tradition and closely tied to Vietnamese culinary culture. It fascinates gourmets around the world with its complex flavor despite the apparent simplicity of its ingredients.
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For four persons
Preparation: 2 and a half hours
Cooking time: 1 hour
* For the broth
– 1 kg of beef bones (your choice: 500 g
of bone-in ribs and/or 500 g of oxtail), cut into small pieces
– 500 g beef shank
– 1 to 2 large marrow bones
– 2 large onions
– 5 shallots
– 1 piece of ginger approximately
– 3 – 4 tablespoons (tbsp) of nuoc mam (fish brine)
– ½ teaspoon (tsp) of salt
– 1-2 pieces of tsao-ko cardamom
– 1 cinnamon stick
– 3 anise stars
– ½ tsp black peppercorns
* For the service
– 500 g of prime rib
– 500 g of rice pasta (pasta or fresh pasta)
– Aromatic herbs: chives, coriander
– 1 green onion (spring onion)
– 1- 2 limes
– 1- 2 finely chopped fresh peppers
* Step 1 : preparation of ingredients
Wash the beef bones and shank. Then, soak the bones and beef in water with salt for 2 hours to clean the meat well and make it more tender when eaten.
Grill the unpeeled and cleaned ginger as well as the whole peeled onions directly on the fire (or in a pan or in the oven under a grill at 240°C for 5 minutes) then dry roast. Then, crush the ginger, cut the onion into 2 or 4.
Roast all the spices then collect them in an empty, closed tea bag.
Wash the aromatic herbs and chilli then finely slice them.
To serve, peel and slice the onion into very thin rings, cut the limes into quarters and chop the pepper.
* 2nd step : preparation of the broth
After soaking the bones and meat for 2 hours, drain the water then bring 3 or 4 liters of water to a boil in a large pot. Once boiling, add the bones and shank and cook for 15 minutes. Rinse the meat, empty the pot and clean it.
Return the bones and shank to 4-5 liters of cold water. When boiling, reduce heat to medium to maintain a slight simmer. Skim regularly.
Then add the sachet of spices with a little salt and pepper to the broth. pho.
After an hour of cooking, add the grilled ginger and grilled onions to the broth. Keep the broth at a low simmer and simmer for 2 hours. Don’t forget to skim from time to time.
After 2 hours of cooking (i.e. a total of 3 hours of cooking for the meat), remove the shank (and the side of the rib if you are using it), leaving the bone in the broth. Soak the meat in water to cool it before refrigerating it.
Remove and discard the spices, ginger and onions.
Add a liter of hot water to the broth and continue cooking, maintaining a slight simmer for 2-3 hours.
Degrease the broth by skimming the fat from the surface.
At the end of cooking, add 3-4 tbsp of nuoc mamtaste and adjust if necessary.
* Step 3 : presentation and tasting
Soak dry rice noodles in water for 30 minutes before serving. Cook them in boiling water for 1-2 minutes then drain them. This step is not necessary for fresh pasta.
Before serving, quickly return a portion of the pasta to boiling water using a large, fine-mesh strainer to reheat the pasta before placing portions in bowls.
Take the cooked meat and 500 g of prime rib out of the fridge. Cut the cooked and raw meat into thin slices. Using a strainer, quickly immerse them in the broth to warm them (for cooked meat) and precook the raw beef before putting them in the bowls. Arrange the meat on the rice noodles in each bowl.
Add the chopped aromatic herbs. For the white part of the green onion, cook it in the broth before putting it in the bowl.
In summary: in every bowl of phofirst place a portion of warmed rice paste,
a few strips of cooked and precooked beef. Then, according to your taste, add two stalks of white spring onion, a few thin slices of raw onion, chopped green spring onion and coriander.
In the broth, you can take out the oxtails and serve them on the side in a dish to accompany the pho or simply reserve them for another meal.
Once all the ingredients are in the bowl, pour in the hot broth, making sure to baste the meat well. Serve the soup pho when it is still warm.
Enjoy your food !
Source: Nguyên Van Thang/CVN