Quick Beef Pho Recipe with Quoc Viet Foods' Pho Soup Base
Hi! I'm making pho for the first time using this base and had a question. Can I just use one spice packet and half the base? If so how much water would I use? Also, it says to blanch the meat - in just water? Really I'm just concerned about how much water to add once I cover the meat - I'm using flank - and I don't want to make it too watery. I'm cooking for 5 so I'm hoping to just use half and save some for the next time. Any more direction would be appreciated!
Stephanie: Yes of course you can scale it any way you want. I think the instructions say the final quantity is about 2 gallons if you use the whole container, so if you use half container then your final stage should have water added to achieve 1 gallon total. When blanching the meat, just boil water and add your meat for 15 minutes as instructed. Some people feel that may be too long so they adjust down to 5-10 minutes. The idea is to wash off impurities outside the meat before you really simmer it for an hour or so to get the flavor out. I'd say flank would taste very nice.
But why not just make the whole batch one time and put the unused broth in the freezer; pretty much standard practice to store any kind of broth or soup. The next time pho craving calls out for you, it's just a matter of thawing and reheating. Good luck with it, but you really can't go wrong. If you don't like the way it tastes on first trial, I am sure your second one will be much much better as you know what to do and what to expect by then.
I'm making the chicken pho, Pho Ga. Anything different about using chicken over beef? This is my first go at it and read all of the beef suggestions, just would like advice if any on chicken. Thanks 🙂
I'm making the pho right now and I did buy this mix and am cooking it with bone in beef shank. I got the mix in Toronto, which I had read in the previous comment that they couldn't find a place. It's an Asian grocery at 1105 Wilson Ave in North York for your Canadians! 🙂 Its simmering as we speak and smells delicious...thanks for this posting! I'll let you know how it turns out. This is my absolute favourite soup...
@Jessica: One big difference about pho ga is the chicken/chicken bones are much faster to cook than the beef/beef bones. So your cooking time will be shortened considerably when you make pho ga. Another factor is you want to make sure your spices and seasonings are used properly/less in pho ga, otherwise you will mask out all the delicate chicken flavors that you have. Whichever pho you are making, the seasoning and spices should already have been adjusted for that particular pho type in the recipe you are using. If you put the recipe side by side, for example, you may notice that pho bo has more star anise, but less cardamom, or pho ga has cinnamon whereas many pho bo recipes do not call for it. I hope this helps, and you'll do fine. Even if your first one does not turn out that great, your next one will be much much better.
@Judy: Thanks for the tip. Toronto has a large Vietnamese and Chinese community so there should be plenty of supplies from the markets there. I've visited Totonto myself a few years back and I liked Totonto very much. I know you will enjoy your home-made pho, and you're right, you can't help but have your home permeated with this beautiful fragrance of pho simmering in your kitchen. And here's the bonus: don't worry, you house will not smell bad. The delicious pho smell will not linger and make your house smell really bad like maybe fish or curry does. More reason to enjoy pho! 😉
Not sure if everyone already knows this but the Quoc Viet 4 pack (2 beef and 2 chicken) is now carried at Costco. Best part, It's only $16.
@Quan: I've read about it but have never seen them at any Costco. I would expect Costco to carry them in certain markets only and not at all stores. In any case, care to share which Costco you saw them at?