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Traditional Vietnamese Pho Made in Your Kitchen

March 22, 2017

Traditional Vietnamese Pho Made in Your Kitchen

Another rare storm has blown in on us here in Northern California. We can’t complain about the rain: we need it so badly. The problem is that recently the storms blowing in have been rather violent with strong winds and torrential down pour that has flooded highways and caused a few problems in the area. When it rains here it also gets pretty cold. The only thing that warms us up is the sun, so when it’s hiding behind some dark, heavy storm clouds, we have to bundle up to stay warm and dry.

This is when I break out a few soup recipes. Fire up the fireplace, pop in a DVD and hunker down with a big pot of soup until the rains stop. I have my old standbys, but I love to find new recipes to mix it up a bit at home. Pho is an exotic Vietnamese soup that has really great flavor. There are a lot of restaurants serving this tasty soup in these parts, but as with everything else, I’m never sure what exactly it’s made of. And with soup there is such an opportunity for deep nutrition!

Bone broth is the base for all of my soups, and it is so healing and nourishing: it’s full of minerals, gelatin, collagen and amino acids, not to mention calcium—which comes in a super-absorbable form. Gelatin is great for building strong cartilage and bones, and is also very soothing and healing for the digestive tract (which is why it is a main feature of the GAPS diet that focuses on healing the gut for healing other issues). I guess there’s a reason soup is so comforting and soothing when we feel sick or cold!

  Ingredients:

  • 2″ fresh ginger, halved length wise 
  • 1 t coconut oil
  • 6 c broth
  • 4 c water
  • 2 t fish sauce (I like this one)
  • 1 t real salt

Spices to flavor the broth

  • 1 cinnamon stick
  • 2 cardamom pods
  • 5 cloves (whole)
  • 6 whole star anise
  • 1 T fennel seeds
  • cheesecloth 
  • 1.5 lbs. of cooked sirloin
  • 3 to 4 large parsnips, peeled

Cold Add-Ins (for after the soup is made)

  • jalapeno peppers, sliced
  • basil leaves
  • mint leaves
  • whole, fresh cilantro
  • bean sprouts
  • lime wedges
  • hot sauce
  • organic soy sauce

Directions:

  1. Broil the onions and ginger in an oven for about 10 minutes each side
  2. Tie up spices and broiled ginger & onions into the cheesecloth
  3. Add broth, water, fish sauce, salt and cheesecloth to the Vitaclay slow cooker
  4. Seal and cover, cooking on “soup” for 1 to 2 hours.
  5. Thinly slice the meat and parsnips and set aside.
  6. Remove the cheesecloth and strain out any stray pieces.
  7. Taste the broth and make adjustments with salt or fish sauce.
  8. Add sliced meat and parsnips to each bowl and add the hot broth over it.
  9. Have the cold add-ins on a separate plate for each person to add individually.

 


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