Me a little obsessed with Asian food? nah… And yet another Asian dish…I’ve been wanting to cook Pho for a while and today was the day! It was my first time and surprisingly it doesn’t taste like any other Asian soup I’ve cooked before at its flavour it’s quite unique; the spices on the broth really make a difference.
The traditional Pho is made with beef stock and usually contains beef as well, but Chay is the veggie version of this soup, usually with tofu as the protein ingredient. The choice of vegetables was based on what I have at hand this time, but you could use broccoli and bok choy for instance. Would you like to try it? It’s a safe bet!
Preparation and cooking time: 45 minutes
- 1 litre vegetable stock
- 1 tablespoon fresh ginger, roughly chopped
- 2 cinnamon sticks
- 2 units star anise
- 6 cloves
- 1/2 teaspoon coriander seeds
- 2 big leaves kale, cut into strips
- 2 cups snow peas
- 2 cups mushrooms, chopped
- Soy sauce to taste
- Black pepper to taste
- a dash of olive oil
- 250 g firm tofu, cubed
- 4 servings rice noodles
For the Garnishes
- Bean sprouts (I used potted, but fresh would be ideal)
- Jalapeños, sliced (I used potted, but fresh would be ideal)
- Fresh cilantro, chopped
- Lime wedges
- Sriracha sauce
Bring the vegetable stock to a boil in a cooking pot, add the ginger and the dry spices and simmer for around 15 minutes. Strain it and return to the cooking pot, add the vegetables and the mushrooms and cook them a few minutes, they must remain crispy. Season with soy sauce and black pepper to taste.
Meanwhile, in a frying pan, heat the oil and brown the tofu cubes with a dash of light soy sauce. Set aside.
Prepare the rice noodles according to the package instructions, usually to soak them 3 minutes in boiling water is enough. Strain them and serve them in the soup bowls, add the tofu cubes on top and pour over the soup, add the garnishes and enjoy!