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Quick Beef Pho Recipe with Quoc Viet Foods' Pho Soup Base  

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Tuan TRan
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 Tuan TRan
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Damn! Who could eat such a god awful thing? Did you look at the ingredients? disodium guanylate, disodium inosinate are the two that always go with MSG hidden under the misnomer Yeast extract. There's no quick short cut for bone broth. Those chemicals are every where in all of the "packaged spices" nowadays no wonder every thing tastes the same.

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chuynh
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Joined: 12 years ago

Pho Restaurant Consultant
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@TUAN TRAN: Thanks for sharing your views. People have a choice to 1) cook everything fresh from scratch or 2) "cheat" a little bit using some or all pre-made (processed) food ingredients for the sake of convenience and time saving. Also they can 3) stay home to cook and eat, or 4) go out to enjoy restaurant food; all the time or once in a while. Regardless of what combination of 1), 2), 3), 4) one wants to do, it's been recommended by many including myself to regulate what you use and what you eat.

Not sure if your statement about "no wonder every thing tastes the same" refers to other food or just this particular QV product. It seems an exaggeration and blanket statement to me. Care to elaborate?

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Tuan TRan
 Tuan TRan
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@CUONG Everything tastes the same meaning because they all use the same chemicals to add "favors" to all different dishes thus the underlying "favor" profile of whatever the dish is is those chemicals. MSG, disodium guanylate, disodium inosinate give the same taste no matter whether you use beef, chicken, pork, etc... That's the problem with those favor "enhancers." They don't enhance anything. They take over, overpower and overwhelm what is supposed to be the main favor of the dish. An analogy is that food is like music and MSG, disodium guanylate, disodium inosinate are like "Ice Ice Baby" bass beat. You don't listen to Rachmaninoff piano concerto no 3 with Ice Ice Baby bass beat in the back ground, do you?

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chuynh
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Joined: 12 years ago

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@TUAN TRAN: I think you're missing the point of using any flavor enhancer, such as MSG and various others. With respect to things like MSG, it doesn't add new flavors. It merely enhances the flavors that are already there. This means if one uses MSG in a chicken dish, for example, it will not begin to taste like "everything else" as you seem to believe for some reason. It would taste like great chicken to a lot of people if done right and done properly (the reason why they continue going to restaurants). On the other hand, to others or when not done right, it would taste bad or take over, or overpower or overwhelm or whatever you think is the problem.

I'm not here to advocate QV products as the best or must-have food. As indicated in the beginning of the post, I said "for those who want to take a shortcut and shave off a few hours, try the Quoc Viet Foods Beef Flavored "Pho" Soup Base option". One can take advantage of my suggestion to make quicker pho, or one can use a traditional recipe method and spend longer time to make pho too. It's an individual's choice.

Regardless, I don't think your music analogy is applicable here. A lot of people like “Ice Ice Baby”, and a lot of other people love Rachmaninoff piano concerto no 3 too. Each is a complete creative work in itself, and as such most people enjoy these complete works as each would stand on its own. I suspect no reasonable person would listen to both at the same time, in the background or otherwise. Now if my neighbor cranks up “Ice Ice Baby” while I'm listening to Rachmaninoff piano concerto no 3 then that's an entirely different issue.

So MSG is just a lowly food ingredient. Use it or not, it’s your choice. As I have always said: know your food and practice moderation.

By the way I'm really a Mozart kind of guy, but same the points apply.

Oh one more thing, I created lovingpho.com to share and exchange knowledge about pho with others. I do appreciate your taking time to share your views. With that said, I will exercise my editorial authority to cut off or remove any conversation that don’t really contribute anything to a healthy pho discussion and knowledge sharing.

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Amber
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I agree!!! MSG is deceptively hidden in ingredients such as “natural flavorings” “yeast extract” ... just google it. Just had a baby, so we’re so much more conscious and aware of what we eat now ... if only they made the spices without all those toxic nasties.

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chuynh
(@chuynh)
Joined: 12 years ago

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@AMBER: Wow what a difference a year makes. Last year you loved QV's soup base, but now its ingredients are "deceptive" and "nasties". What happens?

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Amber
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Hi Cuong! I had a baby (7 months and eating solids) ... and now I’m so cognizant of ingredients that go into her body.

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chuynh
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Hi Amber: Well that's a perfectly a good reason to pay more attention to ingredients in your food. The best and healthiest meal option has always been home-made with ingredients you pick and cooking method you choose. Best wishes to you and new member of your family.

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amber
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has anyone pressure-cooked their meat and then add it to the soup base?

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Anise4Ever
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I have done it many times. Has benefits but it really depends on what your purpose is, plus if you want to deal with the hissing noise for 45 minutes or whatever time you use it.

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amber
 amber
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to save time, but as Cuong stated, it won't give a clear broth 🙁

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chuynh
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Joined: 12 years ago

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@Amber: Using pressure cooker is a solid idea for tenderizing meat, assuming this is the purpose you're going for. Essentially, you're trying to do these 2 things faster: 1) tenderizing the meat (some beef cuts), and 2) extracting beef flavors for the broth which you plan to do after pressure cooking.

For 1), you will want to do some tests in order to know how long you will need, because once started, you can't just open and check doneness or tenderness of the protein. At the end of the pressurized cooking cycle, if you get undercooked meat then you can simmer some more in the broth with other ingredients (spices, charred ginger onions, etc.). If you get overcooked meat then it's not necessary a loss. You'd probably have shredded or pulled meat in your pho instead of sliced beef, but finishing off with the rest of the broth is pretty much the same.

For 2), you'll want to understand the pros and cons. In my experience (and also by design), fast pressure cooking does not serve the same important purpose as slow simmering which is to achieve a clear broth. Think of it as a brute force way to get the meat cooked, tenderized and give off its juice in a very short time. While you gain the time benefit, cooking it this way will result in all kind of stuff in your actual liquid stock which you'll use in the final pho broth making step. It's definitely delicious but it will not be clear. Some people prefer to strain the floating particulates, others don't.

You didn't indicate the reasons you ask the question but I hope the above provides some answers you're looking for.

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amber
 amber
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@Cuong: thank you for the detailed explanation. arghh ... so hard to choose, but I think I will stick with the slow simmer to get clear broth 🙂

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chuynh
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Joined: 12 years ago

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Here's an alternative: You don't have to use the stock coming off of the pressure cooker for pho (e.g., use it for other dishes) and just use the cooked meat for pho then it's not so bad an option. You're already using QV soup base which would give a lot of flavors for the broth. In this way, you get to tenderized meat faster for your pho, plus extra beef stock for other soups and things. I would try that.

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hutieu657
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Don't know what pressure cooker you use. I use this stove top model:

https://www.amazon.com/Presto-6-Quart-Stainless-Pressure-Cooker/dp/B00006ISG6

Electric pressure cookers have more features, but cost more with lower performance.

It's awesome because I can use it on my induction cooktop!!! What I do is load up the pressure cooker with meat and bones, more than enough for one batch of broth. When done I use whatever is needed (meat, bone, stock) for the current broth batch, and freeze the rest for future use. Save a ton of time. I don't strain the stock and the broth is still pretty clear for serving to friends and family. Delish! You can always let things settle a bit or I think running thru a strainer can help if you really really really must have clear broth.

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chuynh
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Good move with cooking in bulk and freeze the extra. For restaurant operation where large production is a must (but only where appropriate and quality is not compromised), I always recommend owners to do exactly this, but obviously with even larger batch and pressure cooker size.

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Phi
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Well, that lawsuit between Quoc Viet Foods and VV Foods is finally over.
Just saw this today pop up on my Google Feed: https://www.prnewswire.com/news-releases/rhema-law-group-and-quoc-viet-foods-obtain-complete-victory-against-vv-foods-in-vietnamese-cot-trademark-case-300906204.html

Looks like Quoc Viet won the whole case. Man, why do companies like VV FOODS do this sort of stuff? Stop copying other people's hard earned trademarks and just do your own stuff. Geez.

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MTJohnson029
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These occasional "updates" 🙄 on the lawsuit are irrelevant to the subject matter being discussed and should be filtered out. I lose my appetite reading them.

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Dishes209
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Don't know what's wrong with these people. They're fighting over the word "cốt" which just means the core, the base or probably even the marrow in the bone. I think no Vietnamese cares about this word on Quoc Viet products. In this context this word "cốt" probably means "base" in English. However, if this word is a trademark then QV as a company themselves don't use their own trademark properly (or even respect it) because nowhere on their product that they have (TM) or ® next the word cốt; they just have ® after the names of each soup type. Strange.

Below is a screen shot of QV's home page, showing what I'm talking about re: the use of the word cốt.

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chuynh
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@dishes209

I'm not an expert in trademark issues but I think QV as a company is not using the marks correctly. While not mandatory, I think it's to the trademark owner's benefit to actually use the ™ or ® consistently and correctly. For example I see "Cốt Phở Bò®" in the text but it's not on the actual product label. Also it seems the whole lawsuit was about the word "Cốt" but on the website the registered mark applies to the whole Cốt Phở Bò®. Very confusing.

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amber
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Hi - It's been a year since I've used QV chicken base. Always turned out great. Looking over my notes, I followed it, but left out how much water to add at the end. I just made it yesterday, and the taste is not the same. Roughly how much broth does 1 tub make? Is it 2 gallons as per Anh Cuong's original recipe? Thank you 🙂

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chuynh
(@chuynh)
Joined: 12 years ago

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@Amber: The amount of water you use should follow the recipe. In this case the recipe should be on QV's cooking instructions, unless you've made changes to fit your taste.

My instructions in the original post above of "Adjust water to 2 gallons or to taste" follows what the label says. about 2 gallon yield. To clarify, this means that the manufacturer suggested amount is 2 gallons of yield. This means to bring up the amount in the pot to 2 gallons and not to add 2 gallons to the pot. It's a big difference and I hope you didn't do the latter ;). How much you actually add depends on personal taste. Hope this helps.

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michael
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 michael
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Hi Anh Cuong,
I have talk to you before , it's been a couple years now. but i would like to know the cost of the package you charge to open a pen restaurant from A to Z turn key. please reply to my email , michaelllc@yahoo.com
thanks

Michael Huynh

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chuynh
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Hi Michael: Thanks for reaching out. I do not maintain standard packages for consulting. No two situations are exactly alike. For this reason I generally go through an initial consultation to determine exactly what you need and whether I'm the right person to help. If you are interested and ready to go then please book a one-hour consultation: https://www.lovingpho.com/one-hour-pho-restaurant-consultation/

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Ron Maki
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 Ron Maki
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how do i make a bowl at a time. and then how do i use the spice bags. Can i open them and just leave the spices in the soup?

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chuynh
(@chuynh)
Joined: 12 years ago

Pho Restaurant Consultant
Posts: 448

@Ron Maki: Sorry but afaik there isn't a way to make one pho bowl at a time from scratch, and get the quality that you want to eat. Best way is to make a batch as described then freeze what you don't eat.

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