Originates from Hue, The Central Highlands – where my grandmother comes from. Some would favourite this noodle soup over Pho.
Stories from Uncle Thu, His Escape From Vietnam
Blood Cakes & Banana Blossom
Large Soup Pot
Ingredients – Serves 6 – 8
3 litres water
1kg rib beef
500g beef shin/ shank
2 ox tails chucks
2 pigs trotters
1 large onion – charr in a griddle pan with no oil
6 stalks lemongrass – charred in a griddle pan with no oil
40g rock sugar
1 tbs salt
1 tbs shrimp paste
1 tbs pork seasoning
2 tbs fish sauce
½ bulb garlic, finely diced
20g lemongrass finely diced, brown off with garlic
½ tsp chilli powder
½ tbs of anatto powder
Traditional Garnishes – optional, get what you can
coriander – coarsely chopped
spring onions – thinly sliced
‘bun hue’ – thick vermicelli
Place in a container, pour on boiling water, place lid on for 20 mins or according to packet instructions. Drain.
To get a clear broth, place all the meat in boiling water with a generous amount of salt. Once the water boils and scum comes to the surface remove from heat and drain. Throw away all the water and wash the meat. Rest.
Meanwhile, clean the pot and bring 3 litres of fresh clean water to the boil.
Add the meat, bones, mooli and 1 tbs salt.
Add the charred onion and the lemongrass stalks to the pot with the rock sugar.
With the lid on, bring the broth to the boil then simmer for 1.5 – 2 hours, removing any scum that surfaces.
Remove the meat from the broth after 1.5 hours. Rest. Slice thinly when at room temperature.
Add 1 tbs shrimp paste to the broth with 1 tbs pork seasoning and 2 tbs fish sauce.
In another pan, add diced garlic with 20g lemongrass finely chopped and brown off with ½ tsp chilli powder. Then pour onto the broth with ½ tbs of anatto powder and simmer
Bring to the boil when ready to serve
Place cooked noodles into a bowl with sliced meat, a generous sprinkle of coriander and spring onions. Garnish with hot mint. Pour on the boiling broth. Always squeeze lime into the soup bowl. The other garnishes should be plated separately and added at the table according to preference.
NOTE: Always use a good quality fish sauce ie. Three Crabs Brand