Recent Posts

Tuesday, May 3, 2011


I quite enjoy Vietnamese cuisine, or at least the modest amount I've tried over the years.  My last post, on fresh spring rolls, was also Vietnamese-inspired (along with our friend James, we had a Vietnamese-themed dinner party a few weeks ago). Their cooking tends to utilize very flavourful elements, but in my opinion is slightly less histrionic than, for example, Thai food.  Don't get me wrong, I love the Thai food.  But sometimes it seems a bit richer than what I'm craving.

Pho is a Vietnamese noodle soup.


The recipe we used was from America's Test Kitchen/Cooks Illustrated cookbook.  We made a beef version.

[delicious beef]

Since the recipe is from a cookbook, I hesitate to post it here.  The general theme of the recipe is as follows.  Create very flavourful broth.  Place thinly sliced raw beef in bowl.  Place rice noodles and sprouts in bowl.  Add hot broth to bowl, cooking the beef.  Garnish with fresh herbs to taste.  Enjoy.

Vietnamese night

[Pho ingredients ready for assembly:  bean sprouts, cooked rice noodles, green onions, soy/fish sauce combo, sliced jalapenos, cilantro, basil, beef]

There are numerous excellent-looking recipes for this soup online, including at Epicurious, Canadian Living, and the Food Network.  While these recipes seem to require making your own beef stock from marrow bones or oxtails, we used vegetable broth cubes instead and had a great result.  I would recommend trying to find the star anise if possible - it adds a really characteristic flavour to the soup.


[second-day soup - in daylight!]

Now, just FYI, I'm taking off on a big adventure for the next few weeks!!  I can't promise I'll be able to post during that time.  However, I do anticipate that you'll enjoy the posts, whenever they arrive.

Until next time - prost!