Vietnamese Pho Soup
A trip to the beautiful country of Vietnam will stimulate the senses. Not only will you meet warm and hospitable people, you will also experience wonderful cities filled with life and Vietnam’s serene nature. Of course, you cannot fully experience the country without trying one of Vietnam’s famous dishes, the pho soup.
Pho is a noodle soup which may also include basil leaves, lime, bean sprouts, peppers and chilies. Thin cuts of meat (beef, pork or chicken) can also added to the soup. Other contents of this dish include rice noodles, and meat broth. The broth itself is made by simmering the meat, bones, oxtails, flank steak, onions and several spices. The whole broth making process can take as much as several hours.
Historians, diners and restaurateurs have all come to agree that the soup could have originated from North Vietnam. The dish is distinctively Vietnamese but also has French and Chinese influences. Some have even speculated that the word pho may have come from the French word feu (meaning fire) and also from the French dish pot-au-feu, a type of beef stew. The method of adding charred onions to pho for flavor and color is a technique which distinguishes the Vietnamese soup from other Asian noodle soups and is also similar to the methods used in pot-au-feu. Rice noodles and certain spices (such as star anise and cassia) are staples in Chinese cuisine.
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Published on 1/5/10