reader’s recipes: vietnamese chicken pho
Ingredients for broth:
1. 1-2 tbsp salt (I used 1 tbsp)
2. 1 1/2 tbsp sugar
3. 9 – 12 star anise
4. 1 tbsp Better Than Bullion chicken stock concentrate (no MSG)
5. rice stick noodles
6. 1 large brown onion
7. 1 large chunk of fresh ginger
8. (1) 4 – 5 lb. chicken: wash, remove giblets and discard, keep the neck for the broth (not pictured cause raw chicken ain’t pretty!)
Directions for the broth:
1. Place the washed chicken (and neck), along with all the star anise in a pot, cover with water and start to boil chicken.
2. While the chicken is cooking, cut the onion and ginger (with the skin on for both) in half and char the onion and ginger over an open flame. You will start to smell the onion and ginger and the skin will burn. Let it roast for about 10 minutes or until you can smell the onion and ginger. This can also be done on a grill or in the oven until it is a golden brown.
3. Remove the burned onion and ginger skin and discard, then place the ginger and onion into the pot with the chicken.
4. Add the salt and sugar. Continue boiling the chicken until the chicken is fully cooked and the meat easily pulls apart from the bone. Takes about an hour.
5. Once chicken is fully cooked, remove the chicken and let it cool for a few minutes. Once it is cool, remove the meat from the bones and put the bones back in the broth and set to simmer.
6. Shred the cooked chicken and set aside. We like to keep the dark and white meat separate because Ben and I prefer the white meat, while the girls have no preference and could use the extra fat from the dark meat.
7. Add 1 tbsp of Better Than Bullion into the broth. Taste the broth and add salt if needed. The broth should have a slight sweetness from the chicken and not be overly salty like chicken noodle soup.
8. Cover and allow broth to simmer for at least another hour, but like with all soups, the longer it simmers, the better it tastes.
9. Strain the both and bring broth back to the pot. This removes all unnecessary bones and chunks. Can also skip this and when you ladle the soup into your boil, just be mindful not to let any chunks in.
10. When ready to serve your broth, bring it back to a boil, so it is nice and hot when you ladle it into your bowl.
Note: You are using the whole chicken, so the soup is a bit oily. We wanted to healthify it a bit and cut out some of the unnecessary fat, so we resisted eating it once it was done (I know it’s hard to do!), refrigerated it overnight so that the fat would harden and accumulate on top, then proceeded to scoop the fat out and discard.
Toppings for soup:
1. side of hoisin sauce (the dark colored one) and a side of siracha hot sauce (the red one)
2. chopped cilantro
3. chopped green onions
4. slices of lime
5. soybean sprouts
6. jalapeno/serrano peppers (we love spice!)
Directions to put together soup:
1. Prepare noodles according to the package.
2. Chop all your toppings you want for your soup.
3. Place cooked noodles in a bowl, add shredded chicken on top, and ladle some of the hot broth into the bowl. If you like, grind fresh pepper on top.
4. Garnish your bowl with all your desired toppings and enjoy!
A great thing about this whole blogging thing, is learning from and getting inspired by others. I first met Liz when I ran The Color Run with my friend Lance. She was on his team and I joined the team, not knowing anyone else, and when he was introducing me to everyone, Liz was so sweet and told me she kind of already knew me thanks to the internet. I tell you, when you meet a blog reader/, it’s like seeing an old friend again and you cut out all that weird awkward stuff and you just pretty much start chatting. At least that’s how it happened with Liz. Liz and I have hung out a couple times after and she is a great cook and baker! I was inspired by this recipe that she shared with me to start this new little feature… Reader’s Recipes!
She learned how to make pho from her grandmother and is so kind to pass the recipe along. It is totally legit and Ben and I love it so much! We’ve made it twice already and will probably make it a lot more once it really cools down over here. If you have never had pho, try it, it really is quite delicious!
Now, this is where you all come in. I would love to try more of your recipes! Do you have a favorite recipe you made up? Maybe something that has been passed down through the generations? Or just a favorite recipe of yours you like to make over and over again? If so, I would love for you to share it with me and I would love to try it and then share it with everyone else. Kind of like those recipe chains that used to go around. We are totally open to trying all types of food (and then healthifying when needed), but I would just love to try new recipes and then pass them along to everyone else. If you do have a recipe to share, leave the name of your recipe here and make sure your comment links up to your email. I will email you if I choose your recipe and you can share the entire recipe that way. I want to try and include a reader’s recipe in my meal planning at least once a week or once every other week, it will depend on my time and if I get a lot of suggestions.
I will make it, post it, and then link back to the originator of the recipe (if you have somewhere to link back to). If it’s something you fancy, then try it! I know some of you asked about this pho recipe when it was in our meal plan, so finally here it is. If you try it, I would love to hear your thoughts on it. I’m pretty sure you would give it a thumbs up too! Thanks Liz for being our first recipe!!!
So tell me friends, do you have a recipe that I could try?