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Monday, March 21, 2016


I love to cook Asian style foods because I grew up with it, and because a lot of Asian cooking share similar ingredients and cooking methods, it's easier for me to look at a recipe and figure things out. Not that I'm a master chef or anything I'm far from that believe me. But common sense prevails. Today's blog post will be dedicated to the Vietnamese Pho. 

I won't be delving into the whole history of this dish, which is a soup. And how it's pronounced, I heard Vietnamese guys go "Foh" and also "Fow!" and "Fuh"... so go figure. I usually go "Fuh"

To make a beef pho, the way Vietnamese mom's make it, it is a time consuming process. I mean, sure you can buy the ready made beef broth that Foodland or Safeway sells, but would you tell an Italian woman "Excuse me why are you wasting time simmering all those tomatoes and herbs? I mean, just buy the marinara mam." Well, I'd expect to get a ladle whack upside my head. Same goes for a Vietnamese mom, she'll make the broth from scratch.

First some onions and ginger are roasted to gain the sweetness from the heat extraction. It adds color to the soup as well.

I won't give you a recipe, I'll just tell you how it's really done. So cold water is added to like beef bones with marrow, and fat. Along with chunks of beef, the water is boiled for several minutes to release some of the fat and marrow, but not all the way. About 5 minutes of the first boil. Then the water is drained, and all impurities are removed. The bones are rinsed under cold water, and then the process is continued.

On the second boil, with water covering the bones up close to the rim of pot, it is boiled then simmered for about 90 minutes. Once simmered, the bones should lose a lot of its marrow into the stock. All the bones and meat are removed. Then the broth is seasoned with some fish sauce (nuoc mam) or you can use Filipino (patis). Ginger, cloves, cinnamon stick, salt.

Vietnamese rice noodles (ban pho) are presoaked, and then added to the bowls, along with the slices of cooked meat, cilantro, cooked onions, ginger. then the broth is heated to a higher heat before serving, and then ladled into bowls. Garnished with sprigs of spearmint, bean sprouts, red hot chilis, and lime wedges.

Check online for some great Pho recipes, and try to find recipes that aren't made by a non- Vietnamese, unless they lived with a Vietnamese person.

Good Luck all you Pho foodies!

As you can see, the beef is rare and cooked,
the broth is somewhat golden, that's from the
roasting of the onions and ginger process.

Vietnamese rice noodles sold dried, all you need 
to do is soak it in warm water for a few minutes just to loosen it
up, but not too long. Once your broth is added to the
bowl, it will cook the noodles more, you just
want to blanch the noodles to loosen it up.

Nuoc Mam Vietnamese fishsauce 

Until next time Ron Sambrano Blogger

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