There’s absolutely no reason why people that follow a plant-based diet can’t enjoy the same traditional dishes. Traditionally, Vietnamese Pho (a rice noodle soup with herbs and veggies) is usually made with a beef or chicken bone broth. You can enjoy a delicious bowl of this warming soup totally plant-based style, and in much less time than the traditional dish takes at that. It’s key to char your onion and ginger, a well as to add the fragrant spices to the soup as the broth simmers. You won’t regret the beautiful fragrant smell as it cooks. It’s my favourite thing about pho – the smell of the star anise, cardamon, cloves, coriander seeds and cinnamon sticks all added together to create a beautiful aroma and the signature taste that makes up pho.
Note: This recipe yields two litres of broth (plus two bowls), great for meal prep.
Rice noodles (approximately 1/4 of a package + more for extra meals) (to be prepared before serving, not in advance)
2 medium sized onions, cut into halves
2 good sized pieces of ginger, cut length wise
4 carrots, peeled and julienned
16 cups of vegetable stock (remember, this is for two litres of broth)
2 tsp tamari or soy sauce
2 small pieces of yellow rock sugar (found in Asian markets)
3 good quality cinnamon sticks
6 star anise
5 whole cloves
1 tbsp coriander seeds
2 cardamon pods
fresh bean sprouts
fresh green onions
fresh bok choy
fresh lime wedges
fresh red thai chilis
fresh thinly sliced onion
- Char your onion and ginger in the oven for about 5-10 minutes. Peel off any blackened pieces and place into the pot of vegetable stock. Now add tamari or soy sauce to the broth.
- Add your julienned carrots and bring to a boil, and then reduce to a simmer.
- Heat a fry pan and add your cinnamon sticks, coriander seeds, cloves, cardamon pods and star anise to the pan and heat over low-medium heat for 5 minutes. Stir often to release their aromas (THE BEST!)
- Next, add your cinnamon sticks, coriander seeds, cloves, cardamon pods and star anise to a cheesecloth tied with twine. Make it into a teabag. Place this into the soup.
- Simmer the broth for roughly 30-40 minutes. Stir frequently to distribute the spices.
- Remove the onion, ginger and spice sack form the broth.
- Prepare your rice noodles by running hot water over them in a bowl. They will soften within a few minutes.
- Prepare your fresh veggies.
- Pour broth into a deep bowl
- Add your rice noodles, bean sprouts, bok choy and fresh onion rings
- Cut a chili into slices and remove the seeds, place into the soup
- Sprinkle fresh lime juice over the soup
Store remaining broth into mason jars and prepare fresh noodles and toppings before your next serving.