I’ve been thinking of making pho for a while now, so I made a trip to my local Asian grocer and stocked up on delicious ingredients. If you’ve never heard of pho, it’s a traditional Vietnamese soup served with rice noodles, vegetables, herbs and some kind of meat. Obviously I’m mixing this up with some mock meat but if that’s not your thing just use the tofu. It’s surprisingly easy to make, just a little time consuming to prepare all of your ingredients. In saying that though, you can probably have this baby made in about an hour. Another fun idea is to just serve the broth, noodles and prepared ingredients and everybody can build their own!
- 2 litres water
- 4 beef style stock cubes (I use Massel)
- 1 brown onion, cut into large chunks
- 3 star anise
- 2 cinnamon sticks
- 1/4 cup lime juice
- 2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce (make sure it’s vegan! I use Spring Gully brand)
- 1 tablespoon soy sauce
- 1 375 gram packet rice noodles
- 2 cups “beef” chunks, thinly sliced (I use Lamyong)
- 1 packet fried tofu puffs (about 12 pieces, you can find them at your Asian supermarket)
- 1 bunch coriander
- 1 bunch mint
- 1 bunch basil
- 1 cup bean shoots
- 1 large red chilli, finely sliced (optional)
- 1 spring onion, finely sliced
- 1/3 cup fried shallots
- 1/4 cup chilli paste (optional)
- 1 lime, cut into wedges
- In a large stockpot, combine the water, stock cubes, onion, star anise and cinnamon sticks. Bring to the boil.
- Add the lime juice, Worcestershire sauce and soy sauce and stir through.
- Leave the stock to simmer.
- Prepare your noodles by placing in a saucepan of boiling water for about seven minutes or until cooked. Drain and set aside.
- Place a small amount of olive oil in a frypan and throw in the tofu and “beef”. Toss around until heated through.
- Lay out four large bowls and evenly distribute the rice noodles.
- Fill the bowls with the broth before tearing up the coriander, mint and basil and placing on one side of each bowl.
- Place the “beef chunks down the middle of each bowl next to the herbs and place the tofu puffs next along.
- Add some bean shoots before sprinkling some chilli, spring onion, fried shallots and chilli paste.
- Finish with a lime wedge and serve piping hot.