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What Is Pho? (Vietnamese Noodle Soup)

Beef Sliced and Beef Meatballs Pho Noodle Soup

Beef Sliced and Beef Meatballs

Pho (pronounced Fuh) is a traditional Vietnamese cuisine consisting of broth (chicken, or beef), rice noodles, herbs, and meat.  The cuisine is widely known Vietnamese dish that is served at all Vietnamese restaurant! Pho is a widely popular soup for curing hangovers or a perfect comfort food on a raining weather day. Pho is a traditional Vietnamese street food in the originated in the Hanoi. But now you will probably see if at every street corner in Vietnam.

When you order pho, there many different kinds of pho noodle soups. We’ll just keep it short and simple with two kinds of noodle soups you’ll see at all Vietnamese restaurants. Thinly sliced beef and chicken pho. Another name for chicken pho is chicken noodle soup. When the waiter brings out the soup, the noodle soup is accompanying with a dish of garnishes. The garnishes are typically bean sprouts, basil, limes, peppers, and green onions.

At every pho restaurant, you will see next to your table two crucial sauces to add into your soup. One of the red sauces is Sriracha. Sriracha adds that extra added kick of spice into the soup. The other dark brown looking sauce is hosin sauce. Plum Sauce adds the sweet flavor to accompany the Sriracha.

The ingredients and preparation for pho is a long grueling process. Each process takes tremendous amounts of preparation and different amounts of spices into the broth. A variety of spices is added into the slow cooking process that takes about 8-10 hours to cook. The broth is cooked with the bones of the meat to get the extra beefy flavors. The spices added to the broth are typically cinnamon, roasted ginger, cloves, star anise, roasted onions, black cardamom.

The typical pho noodle soup is served with white rice noodles, and different cuts of meats. ( Steak, flank, brisket, lean flank).  Also, Depending on the restaurant’s menu offering to their customers. Other types of beef parts like tendons, tripe, and meatballs are added into the soup for that extra beefiness.

Chicken Pho is just the same as the beef noodle soup, but with chicken! It is often known as chicken noodle soup at some restaurants. Shredded white chicken breast is substituted for the meat in chicken pho and green onions to top the dish off.

I hope this guide is helpful in explaining what pho noodle soup is and what to look for when going into a restaurant.