Friday, December 31, 2010
2 T. olive oil
1 yellow onion
5 cloves of garlic
1 small piece of fresh ginger
3 cinnamon sticks
4 pods of star anise
Vegetable stock, preferably Knorr bouillon
cooked rice noodles
Fresh herbs, such as mint, basil and cilantro
Sriracha chili paste
Slices of lime
Set a large, deep pot on low heat on the stove. Cut the onion and shallots in slivers and
sauté in olive oil with the chopped garlic cloves and sliced ginger until translucent.
Add the water and one cube of vegetable bouillon and allow to dissolve. Place the cloves and anise in a cheesecloth pouch and add to the pot. Add several tablespoons of soy sauce and the cinnamon sticks. Cover the pot and let the broth simmer for twenty-five minutes.
While waiting for the broth, cook the rice noodles. The best noodles for pho are a thin, flat variety from Thailand, most often used in Pad Thai. Boil a small pot of water. Place the noodles in a large bowl and cover with the boiling water. Allow the noodles to soak for five to seven minutes, then drain and run under cold water. Do not allow the noodles to over-cook. Set the cooked noodles aside.
After the broth has simmered, remove the clove/anise pouch. Fill several deep bowls with a handful of noodles each. Add the broth to cover the noodles. Top with sliced scallions, fresh basil, mint and cilantro, as well as hoisin sauce and sriracha chili paste. Squeeze several slices of lime juice over the soup and enjoy.