Get that epic pho flavour in record time with this easy recipe. Use star anise, cinnamon, garlic, ginger and onion as aromatics to flavour ready-made beef stock, then pour it over the noodles and beef and add fresh Thai condiments.
400g (14oz) dried rice stick noodles
½ onion, halved and thinly sliced
200g (7oz) beef fillet (tenderloin) steak
1 cup finely sliced spring onion (scallions)
Express pho broth:
1 tsp vegetable oil
1 onion, diced
5 cm (2”) piece ginger, sliced
5 garlic cloves, roughly chopped
3 whole star anise
2 cinnamon sticks
2 L (2 QT) beef stock
½ cup fish sauce
3 tbsp regular or light soy sauce
Thai basil leaves
finely sliced long red chillies
Wrap the beef in cling film and place in the freezer to chill.
To make the broth, heat the vegetable oil in a large pot over medium-high heat. Add the onion, ginger, garlic, star anise and cinnamon sticks. Cook for 3-4 minutes until the onion has softened. Add the beef stock, fish sauce and soy sauce. Bring to a simmer then turn the heat down to medium-low and gently simmer for 20 minutes.
In the meantime, cook the noodles according to the packet instructions. Drain and rinse under running water to cool. Divide between four serving bowls and top with raw onion slices.
Slice the beef into very thin slices and place on top of the noodles. Add a generous amount of spring onion to each bowl.
Strain the broth into a clean saucepan and then place back on high heat until just simmering. Ladle the hot broth over the beef. It should cook in the hot soup. Serve with condiments.
– Sambal oelek is a chilli paste found in the Asian aisle of most supermarkets.