I had been seeing a lot of people posting lately about eating pho, a food I was not familiar with. What was this stuff? Was it yummy? Was it healthy? Well, I have discovered it is very yummy, and can be very healthy.
Pho is a Vietnamese noodle soup, reminiscent of ramen noodles. Traditionally the recipe uses flat rice noodles, like the ones used in Pad Thai. The flavor combination is really unique and delicious. It uses a lot of spices that are less common to me, like star anise (which has a sort of licorice flavor), cloves, and cardamom. When I decided to make this recipe, I looked for these spices in my grocery store and wasn’t able to find them.
To my luck, I found a pho soup stock (what are the chances, right?!) so that is what I used for half of my liquid here. I was hoping to be able to find it on amazon to share with you guys, but the only one they have is a 12 pack, and I realize that is a large commitment. For those of you who know you like pho and want to take the plunge, you can find the 12 pack pho stock here (this stock is gluten free). Otherwise, check out in the natural food section of your food store, which was where I found mine, or you can check out the locator on their website. If none of that works out, and you can find star anise, use 1 of those, and 1/8 tsp ground cloves and all veggie broth. Or you could just use the recipe with veggie broth and skip the anise and cloves; it would be slightly less exotic but just as lovely.
Health highlight of ginger: Ginger is extremely anti-inflammatory, and research has had increasingly strong evidence that suggests it might be useful in treatment of arthritis. Ginger has been used for hundreds of years to soothe the stomach, and in lab tests they have found it more useful against motion sickness than prescription medication. It also appears to neutralize stomach acids, and is very useful in the treatment of nausea and vomiting. It also has been linked to prevention of some cancers, and been shown to boost the immune system!
- 8 cups Veggie Broth (see note above)
- 1 inch piece Ginger – peeled
- 7 ounces Brown Rice Pasta (they usually come in 14 oz pkgs, so half a pkg)
- 2 tablespoons Soy Sauce (gluten free)
- 3 ribs Bok Choy – sliced
- 1 medium Onion – sliced
- 1 package Bean Sprouts
- 1 (3.5 oz) package Shiitake Mushrooms
- Juice of ½ Lime
- 1 Chili Pepper - sliced (or sriracha) – optional
- In a large pot add the broth, ginger, and soy sauce
- Bring the broth to a boil
- Add the pasta, cook for 10 minutes
- Add the onion and bok choy
- Boil another 4 minutes
- Add the bean sprouts, mushrooms, lime juice, and chilies (if using)
- Fish out the ginger
- Serve! Enjoy!!!!