ARE YOU READY FOR A BROTH SO DELICIOUS THAT ALL YOU WANT TO DO IS STAY HOME AND SLURP IT ALL DAY? You’ve come to the right place. Fall is here and it’s getting all chilly willy and the crisp air is just begging you to make soup. I like soups of all kinds, but there’s something very special about pho. Authentic pho requires boiling bones for a verrryyy long time and unless you’re running a restaurant, most people aren’t equipped for that! If you are, all the power to you. If you’re not, these are some shortcuts you can take to make a big, punchy broth at home. After all, the broth is the most important part.
There are a million pho recipes out there, and they’re quite similar, but I’m going to give it to you in the most streamlined way possible.
5 Star anise
3 cardamom pods
1 tbsp fennel seeds
1 tbsp coriander seeds
3 cinnamon sticks
1 large onion
1 inch nub of ginger
8-9 cups of beef broth (2 cartons)
1 tbsp brown or coconut sugar
1 tbsp fish sauce
Rice noodles (any kind you want!)
Herbs (Thai basil, cilantro, mint etc)
Sliced green onion
Thinly sliced radishes
Thinly sliced jalapeños or hot peppers of choice
Sliced steak, rotisserie chicken, fried tofu, sautéed mushrooms etc.
- In a large pot or dutch oven, toast spices over low-medium heat for about 3-5 minutes, until the flavours bloom.
- Cut the onion and ginger into to pieces and add to spices. (*IF* you have the time and want some extra depth of flavour, char the onion and ginger in the broiler first. About 10 min)
- If using rotisserie chicken, add the bones and carcass. Again, it’s not necessary but if you have extra bones, us em’!
- Add the broth. Bring to a boil and then reduce heat. Cover and let simmer for at least 2 hours on low. The longer you let it simmer, the richer the flavour.
- Strain the soup, removing the whole spices, onion, ginger and bones.
- Add the fish sauce and sugar. Taste!
- When the broth is ready, cook the noodles according to the instructions.
- Add noodles to bowls and ladle piping hot broth over noodles.
- Top with protein, herbs and veggies of choice!
- Serve with sriracha, hoisin sauce and lime wedges.
ISN’T IT BEAUTIFUL?? I chose rotisserie chicken because they’re delicious and ready to use. I didn’t feel like running out to a bunch of grocery stores so used thinly slices radishes instead of beansprouts. My husband and dad aren’t big on herbs (HOW?!) so I just used some fresh basil on mine. I know vermicelli noodles aren’t traditional in pho, but it’s what I had available AND I love how quickly they cook and how easily they soak up flavour.
You can use chicken broth or veggie broth instead of beef. If you’re vegan, omit the fish sauce and top with tofu. If you’re not eating soy, try some sautéed or roasted shiitake or cremini mushrooms! You can really make this soup work for you. It’s toasting those whole spices and letting the broth simmer that are the most important parts of this meal.
What are you waiting pho?! (it’s pronounced FUH, like “DUH” so, that actually doesn’t make sense, but you get it!)
Just eat this and shut up already. LOVE YOU.