N’s birthday was the day after Thanksgiving this year. As per the usual, I asked him what he wanted to eat for his special day. His response was quick and decisive: Pho.
Hm. Given that it’s not a part of our usual repertoire, I felt we had to come up with a strategy. Well, that, along with the fact that our parents would be here for the weekend. It’s one thing to make a dish and have it be sub-par (aka: nastay) for just the two of us and another (aka: not acceptable) for us to turn our parents into our culinary guinea pigs. I guess it’s not surprising then, that we had a Pho test run the week before.
So the strategy: we planned on making Pho Ga (hey, it’s basically Asian chicken noodle soup–even our picky eaters wouldn’t object). We’d need some chicken carcasses for the broth so we decided to forget the turkey and go all white trash for Thanksgiving and make beer can chicken. I’m serious. And it was seriously delicious.
How did we end up making this pho-king soup? Easy.
Chicken broth made from cut-up beer can chicken carcasses and tasty spices (star anise, cloves, ginger, coriander, fish sauce) simmered for several hours.
Rice noodles (8 minutes and you are good to go)
Sliced cooked chicken breast
Veggies: bean sprouts, jalapeno slices, red onion slices, celery and red bell pepper slices (ok, this is not traditional…but so good I had to put them in)
Fresh herbs: tons of cilantro, some basil and parsley
Sriracha to taste
Hoison to taste
Put your face close to the bowl and commence slurping. Everyone went for seconds so we must have done something right.
Happy Pho-king Birthday N!