Tuesday, March 18, 2008



- 1.2 kg pork knuckles or leg: Cut into 8 to 10 pieces after removing nails by flaming. Use boneless pork loin or baby ribs cut into two-finger-sized pieces.

- 600g beef sirloin or flank.

- 1 tablespoon Hue-styled shrimp paste.

- 5 – 6 stalks of lemongrass.

- Salt, black pepper, MSG, fish sauce.

- Large onion, green onion, cilantro, sliced banana flower, mixed vegetables.

- 1.5 kg rice noodles.

- Powdered chili or annatto seed.


- Preparation for the broth: Dilute 1 tablespoon of shrimp paste in 1/2 cup of cold water, and pour the mixture into a sieve for removing the coarser parts of paste. Place the pieces of pork knuckles / leg and the beef sirloin / flank into the diluted shrimp paste added with 2 tablespoons first-class fish sauce, 1 teaspoon salt, a half teaspoon pepper, and bruised lemongrass. Set aside for about 30 to 40 minutes. Use threads to fasten each piece of pork knuckles in round shape.

- Bring water to the boil and add all pork and beef pieces so that the water level should be 5 cm higher than pork and beef. Simmer for 30 minutes while constantly skimming of any scum from the surface until pork becomes tender. Remove pork out of the broth and then add more boiling water to continue simmering for 30 – 40 more minutes until beef is tender. Remove beef and add some more salt, MSG and shrimp paste into the broth.

- Preparation of colored spices: Heat 3 tablespoons vegetable oil in a pan, and then add 1/2 tablespoon powdered chili or annatto seed. Stir-fry continuously until the chili/annatto seed oil becomes red and smells delicious, and then pour the oil into the broth through a sieve.

- Slice beef into thin pieces.

- Remove the threads of pork.

- Slice large onion into pieces, and cilantro into small thin pieces.


- Divide 1.5 kg rice noodles among 8 – 10 bowls. Place the pieces of beef sirloin and a thin slice of pork on the noodle, then pour the broth into the bowl with thinly-sliced cilantro, onion and pepper.

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