Food and Drink

An Introduction to Pho, Vietnamese Noodle Soup

It might just be my favorite thing on earth.

Hot broth, rice noodles, an assortment of beef; of course I am talking about pho.

For someone unfamiliar with the Vietnamese soup of the heavens that most people mispronounce. It starts with compiling rice noodles and meat into a serving dish topped with onions, green onions, and cilantro. A simmering hot beef bone stock is then poured over the combined ingredients. If a person is ordering rare beef pho this is where the cooking process takes place.

A plate of assortments is served with the soup and these consist of bean sprouts, Thai basil, a lime wedge, and sometimes jalapeños.

When it first comes out to the table, stop. Taste the broth, take in the aromas, relax. Doing these few things will allow you to judge the overall quality before dumping other things into the bowl such as sriracha or fish sauce. Which brings up a good point, there is also fish sauce, sriracha, and hoisin.

Fish sauce adds, well, fishiness, while hoisin give sort of a meaty sweetness. I know this might be overwhelming for a first timer but I promise you will get the hang of it — don not let food intimidate you.

Pho seems to be increasing in popularity across the United States and even here in Southwest Florida.

I for one am all about this “food craze” sweeping the nation.

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