Beef Treat borrowed from Vietnamese Pho
I got just a little wet on this Pho hunt in Ho Chi Minh City
show me the beef
I have been lucky enough to be blessed with the opportunity to fully immerse into the cuisine of Vietnam, now made nearly famous by the Pho houses. A strange thing about the menus and recipes is the notion that they cannot be altered. It is more likely to hear “that pho is not the way it is supposed to be” than “that is an interesting style of pho”. Well I am a southwestern US boy that grew up with a fantastic German American Mother who could cook anything – her style that is. So the same as she adapted Chile Rellenos, I take liberty with some Pho technique. For another time I will speak of the adaptation of Mexican Menudo by applying some Pho standards.
Where I am from it is so dry we always celebrate the rain with soup and popcorn
So the Pho soup is to be served near boiling hot. Now doubt a culturally mandated concept to assure sterilization, but it does create a special dining experience. Of course we all await the lawyer who sues because his Pho was “too hot”. Pho Thai on the side, refers to a boiling hot bowl of soup with thinly cut beef on a dish raw on the side. The diner then takes her chopsticks and one by one adds the beef to the bowl. It can remain in or be taken out and eaten separately. I prefer to first squeeze lime all over the beef and let set for a few minutes, and then just dip it in the soup and cook the desired amount.
But at home I put a new twist on it. I do not make a soup, just a strong broth. Any broth will do. I prefer onions, beef bouillon, and butter in the mix, of course some garlic salt and oregano seems like a good idea. Then I take my beef and just cook it by dipping it into by boiling hot broth.
When getting the beef or slicing it yourself I heartily recommend a thickness just up from shaving.
East meets west is cool