1/3 Photos of Pho by Mean Chef (Vietnamese Beef & Rice-Noodle Soup)
4 hrs 30 mins
I adopted this recipe of one of my favorite dishes. It may look complicated but it is just making soup by getting all the flavor you can from the ingredients. The results are INCREDIBLE.
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Units: US | Metric
For the broth
- 4 lbs oxtails, cut into 1 1/2 to 2 inch pieces and trimmed of fat
- 1 piece gingerroot, unpeeled (3 inch)
- 1 large onion, halved and unpeeled
- 1/3 cup nuoc nam (fish sauce)
- 8 whole star anise
- 5 whole cloves
- 3 inches cinnamon sticks
- 1 teaspoon fennel seed
- 3 bay leaves
For the garnish
- 1 lb rice noodles (1/4 inch)
- 2 bunches scallions, sliced thin
- 1/2 cup tightly packed fresh cilantro leaves, roughly chopped
- 1/2 cup parsley, roughly chopped
- 1/2 cup basil, whole fresh plants
- 1 1/2 cups mung bean sprouts
- 3 large limes, cut into wedges and red chile paste (optional) or 3 large sliced fresh hot chili peppers (optional)
- 3/4 lb filet mignon, trimmed of fat and sliced very thin
- 1Put the oxtails into a large stockpot and add enough water to cover the bones by 4 inches (about 1 1/2 gallons). This will reduce to about 3 quarts when you are done.
- 2Bring to a full boil and then lower the heat to a rapid simmer.
- 3Skim the scum that rises to the surface.
- 4Meanwhile put the ginger and onion halves on a baking sheet and char them under the broiler until lightly blackened, 10 to 15 minutes.
- 5Turn them over halfway through cooking.
- 6When cool enough to handle, rinse the onion and ginger under running water, using a knife to scrape away some of the charred surface.
- 7Cut the ginger into 3 pieces and toss it and the onion halves into the simmering broth, along with 1 tablespoon salt and the fish sauce.
- 8Put the star anise, cloves, and cinnamon stick in a small skillet and toast them on top of a stove burner over medium heat.
- 9Turn the spices a couple of times until they're slightly darkened (3 to 4 minutes) and until you smell their aroma.
- 10Put the toasted spices and fennel seeds in a small square of double thick cheesecloth and tie the bundle with a long piece of kitchen twine.
- 11Add the spice bundle and the bay leaves to the broth, tying the end of the twine to the pot handle for easy retrieval.
- 12Let the broth simmer slowly, uncovered, skimming occasionally.
- 13After 4 hours, remove the spice bundle, onion, bay leaves and ginger from the pot and discard.
- 14Remove the oxtails from the pot and set aside.
- 15Let the broth continue to simmer.
- 16When the meat is cool enough to handle, pull the meat from the bones.
- 17Set the meat aside and return the bones to the broth.
- 18Continue simmering, uncovered, until the broth is rich and flavorful, about 1 hour. At this point you should cool the broth in the refrigerator overnight and then defat.
- 19Heat the broth and taste to determine if you need to add more salt or fish sauce as needed.
- 20Meanwhile, soak the rice noodles in cold water for at least 20 minutes.
- 21Arrange the sliced scallions, cilantro, parsley, basil, bean sprouts, lime wedges, and chiles on a platter in separate piles.
- 22Bring a large pot of water to a boil and add the drained rice noodles.
- 23Give the noodles a quick stir and cook until tender but firm, about 1 minute.
- 24Rice noodles can quickly become gummy, so don't let them overcook.
- 25Drain the noodles.
- 26Warm 4 large bowls by rinsing them with hot water and divide the noodles among the bowls.
- 27Just before serving, return the broth to a full boil.
- 28Arrange the slices of raw filet and pieces of cooked oxtail meat over the noodles in each bowl.
- 29Carefully ladle the boiling broth over all; the raw beef should be submerged in the broth.
- 30Serve immediately, along with the platters of garnish.
- 31Yield: 3 quarts of broth; serves 4 as a main course.
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Nutritional Facts for Pho by Mean Chef (Vietnamese Beef & Rice-Noodle Soup)
Serving Size: 1 (455 g)
Servings Per Recipe: 6
- Amount Per Serving
- % Daily Value
- Calories 478.2
- Calories from Fat 117
- Total Fat 13.1 g
- Saturated Fat 5.2 g
- Cholesterol 39.6 mg
- Sodium 1415.2 mg
- Total Carbohydrate 72.7 g
- Dietary Fiber 4.0 g
- Sugars 4.1 g
- Protein 16.1 g
The following items or measurements are not included: