Bún Bò Huê

Saskatoon has literally dozens of vietnamese restaurants and after being turned on to Bún Bò Huê by Jenny Ong, we have tried many different variations. We decided to try an authentic recipe to see how similar it is to the restaurant version.  To tell the truth when we try to recreate many of our restaurant favorites, the “it” factor is missing (read:MSG) As was the case this time.  A couple days later, while watching a special on Laos, I remembered the leftovers re-heated the dish.  It was delicious!  My mom always swore soup is better days later and man is she right.  I think cuz the lemon grass/chili paste had time to infuse into the broth rather than being added at the last minute.  Plus I avoided the post soup msg cramp,headache,thirst!  Try it out! The peas aren’t authentic but generally Meg won’t feed me just meat and noodles

 

Huê´-Style Spicy Beef and Rice Noodle Soup
 
(Bún Bò Huê´)

SERVES 8.

7 tbsp. canola oil
3 medium yellow onions, 2 cut into 1″ dice,
   1 thinly sliced
1 tbsp. annatto seeds
2 lbs. boneless beef shank (shin), halved
   crosswise, tendon removed and discarded
1 lb. boneless pork leg, from the upper butt portion
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
4 lbs. beef bones, cut into 2″ pieces,
   boiled for 3 minutes
1 1⁄2 lbs. fresh pork hock, cut into 1⁄2″ slices
3 tbsp. plus 2 1⁄2 tsp. Vietnamese fish sauce
5 trimmed stalks lemongrass, 4 cut into 3″
   pieces, bruised;1 minced
1  1″ chunk Chinese yellow rock sugar
3 tbsp. dried chile flakes
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 tsp. granulated sugar
2 tbsp. fine shrimp sauce
2  14-oz. packages large round bún (Vietnamese
   rice noodles), boiled, then rinsed with cold water
1⁄3 cup chopped rau ra˘m (Vietnamese coriander)
3 scallions, green parts only, trimmed and thinly sliced

1. For the broth: Heat 2 tbsp. oil in a stockpot over medium-high heat. Add diced onions and cook for 2 minutes. Add annatto; cook until onions are yellow, 4–5 minutes. Season beef and pork leg with salt and pepper; push onions to side; add beef and pork. Sear meat for 4–5 minutes; add bones, hocks, and 5 quarts water. Bring to a boil; skim off and discard any scum. Add 3 tbsp. fish sauce, bruised lemongrass, and rock sugar; reduce heat and simmer for 1 hour. Transfer pork leg and hocks to a bowl of cold water; let soak for 10 minutes. Simmer broth for 1 hour more. Repeat soaking and draining with shank. Chill leg, hocks, and shank in refrigerator. Skim fat from broth; strain through a fine sieve.

2. Combine remaining oil, chile flakes, garlic, and minced lemongrass in a small pot over medium-low heat; gently simmer for 5 minutes. Remove from heat; stir in remaining fish sauce and granulated sugar. Set chile mixture aside.

3. Bring broth to a boil in a large pot. In a bowl, stir together 1 cup of broth with shrimp sauce; pour into pot through a fine sieve and stir in 1 1⁄2 tbsp. of chile mixture. Season to taste with salt. Divide noodles between 8 bowls. Cut beef and pork across the grain into 1⁄16″-thick slices; top each bowl with slices, followed by sliced onions, rau ra˘m, and scallions. Add hocks to broth; bring to a boil. Ladle 2 cups hot broth with some hock into each bowl. Serve with remaining chile mixture, mint sprigs, sliced thai chiles, and lime wedges, if you like.

2 Comments

  1. Jodi says:

    I am definately game to try this food — it has been an absent fav from my kitchen

  2. jenny says:

    you had asked me to review noodle bowls with my sister, and upon researching, i realized that no one makes a meatless broth, and granted, a veggie broth can’t quite hold it down, but i have a recipe to send you kids and one day soon, we’ll have pho at my house.

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