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Sunday, June 26, 2011

Spicy Vietnamese Beef Noodle Soup (Bún Bò Huế)


Ingredients & Cooking Directions for Bún Bò Huế - Spicy Vietnamese Beef Noodle Soup

Estimated Servings: 4

Step 1: Cook the Broth

14 cups of water
1 pound chuck roast
3 sticks lemongrass
2 cloves peeled garlic
1 large peeled shallot
2 tablespoons salt
2 tablespoons sugar

Turn your stove on high heat and bring your water to a boil. While waiting for the water to come to a boil, bruise the lemongrass with a large knife and microwave the lemongrass along with the garlic and shallot for 3 minutes. Once the water comes to a boil, add in the sugar, salt, microwaved lemongrass, garlic and shallot to the water. Then add in the beef and turn your heat down to medium and allow the beef to cook for about 15-20 minutes.

Step 2: Prepare the Noodles

8 cups of water
½ teaspoon salt
1 package of Bún Bò Huế noodles

Soak the noodles in water for 10 minutes. Then bring a pot of water to a boil and add in the salt. Put the soaked noodles into the boiling water cooking it according to the directions on the package. Finally rinse and drain the noodles and set them aside.

Step 3: Sauté the Beef

1 tablespoon chopped garlic
1 tablespoon chopped lemongrass
1 tablespoon chopped shallots
1 teaspoon Bún Bò Huế seasonings or paprika
1 teaspoon salt
½ teaspoon pepper
1 teaspoon sugar
5 tablespoons fish sauce
2 tablespoons oil

After the beef has been cooking in the broth for about 15-20 minutes, remove it from the broth and allow it to cool down before slicing. Once the beef is cool enough to handle, slice it thinly. Then place the sliced beef into a bowl and add in ½ tablespoon chopped garlic, ½ tablespoon chopped lemongrass, ½ tablespoon chopped shallots, Bún Bò Huế seasonings or paprika, salt, pepper, sugar and fish sauce and mix everything well. Turn your stove on medium heat and add in the oil and the other half of the chopped garlic, shallots and lemongrass stirring it around the pan until fragrant. Now add in the seasoned beef and sauté it for about a minute. Next, add in the fish sauce and make sure that all of the beef slices get coated with the sauce. Continue to cook the beef until it is cooked all the way through. Finally add the beef back in the broth, cover the pot with a lid, and cook the broth for another 10-15 minutes.

Step 4: Assemble the Dish

2 tablespoons cooking oil (vegetable or canola oil)
1 tablespoon Bún Bò Huế seasonings
½ teaspoon dried red chili flakes
Lime wedges
Jalapeno slices
Shredded iceberg lettuce 
Chopped green onions & cilantro
Bean sprouts
Basil
Precooked pork's blood or congealed pig’s blood (optional)

Optional: Cut congealed pig’s blood into 1 inch cubes and set aside. Bring a pot of water to a boil and add in the blood cubes. Cook the cubes for about 2 minutes or until you see the color darken. Make sure you cook the cubes all the way through. Finally drain the cubes and set them aside. 

To make the red spice oil, turn the stove on medium high heat and add in some oil to a small pan. Then pour the dried red chili flakes and Bún Bò Huế seasonings stirring it around until you see the oil bubbling and then pour the spice mixture into the broth. To assemble the dish, put some cooked noodles into a bowl, place slices of beef on top of the noodles, garnish with the herbs and veggies, and add in the cooked pork’s blood cubes. Finally, pour in the broth, making sure you get the red part of the broth as well. Right before you eat, make sure to squeeze in some lime juice.

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