Week 29 - Vietnamese pho with summer rolls

Updated: Feb 5, 2021

A rich, aromatic, vegetarian broth with crisp veg and fresh herbs, served with bright, crunchy summer rolls.


Basic ingredients (4 people)

1 onion

4 spring onions

150g beansprouts

2 pak choi

1 big carrot

1 lime

Punnet fresh shitake mushrooms

300g rice noodles/rice vermicelli noodles

200g firm tofu

15g dried shitake mushrooms (these are really vital for the depth of flavour)

Soy sauce

2-2.5 litres of good quality stock (Knorr stockpots, cubes or bouillon)

Herbs & spices: 4 cloves, 1 star anise, 1 cinnamon stick, 2tsp coriander seeds, 10 peppercorns, fresh mint, fresh coriander, fresh basil (try and get Thai basil), fresh chilli


Luxury ingredients (optional)

Siracha sauce


Summer rolls

  • Summer roll wrappers - if you can't find in supermarket/Asian store, order from Amazon: search 'Vietnamese rice paper' or 'Banh Trang Fresh Spring Roll'

  • Your choice of crunchy, vibrant veg: carrots, peppers, cucumber, red cabbage, avocado, cherry tomatoes

Selection of pho and summer rolls prepared by the foodies in this week's class

PREP

Boil kettle · press tofu · heat a saucepan which is big enough to hold your stock


Once pan is hot, dry toast the following until they smell nice:

  • 4 cloves

  • 1-2 star anise

  • 1 cinnamon stick

  • 2tsp coriander seeds

  • 10 peppercorns

Then add:

  • 1 brown onion, quartered

  • 1 carrot, chunky chopped

Top up with boiling water (500ml-750ml per person) and add 2 stock cubes/pots. Throw in 15g of dried shitake mushrooms and 2tbsp of soy sauce.

Simmer for 30 mins, then strain and bring back to a simmer. Add your noodles (75g/pp) and when they are cooked, serve.


In the mean time, prep your condiments and your summer rolls.


Fry off your tofu in cubes in hot olive oil, set aside and keep warm, then repeat with the sliced shitake mushrooms.


On a lovely serving plate place:

  • Fresh coriander strands

  • Fresh mint leaves, picked off stem

  • Fresh Thai basil leaves, carefully plucked from stem (or they'll go brown)

  • Sliced spring onions

  • Lime wedges

  • Beansprouts

  • Whole fresh chillis for crunching


Summer rolls

You'll need a dish or bowl large enough to accommodate the summer roll wrappers laid flat. Fill this with hot water.


Chop up your veggies and avocado - hint: cut long thin strips so it's easier to eat in the roll.


Suggestions:

  • carrots

  • peppers

  • cucumber

  • red cabbage

  • sliced avocado

  • cherry tomatoes

  • fresh herbs

  • chilli

  • tofu

  • beansprouts

  • anything but the kitchen sink

When you're ready, submerge your wrapper into the water.... DON'T LET GO! Wait until it is soft and pliable like thick cling film, then lift out of the water (let it drip for a second) and place carefully onto the surface.


No doubt this went wrong the first time and stuck to itself/your hand/your hair/your face. Don't be disheartened. Try again.


When it is finally lying on the surface, fill with treats. Wrap over one long end, then the two short ends, the roooollllllll up into a sausage.


Alternatively, just get them to close somehow, like our dear Chef Terry who has sausages for fingers:

They still tasted delicious so don't just a roll by its wrapping...


When your broth is ready, place the tofu, shitake mushrooms and pak choi in the bottom of the bowl and cover with the hot liquid to warm through. Portion out the noodles and set on the table.

Let everyone top their own pho with their choice of toppings. Slurp and enjoy with some fresh lime and siracha (optional).


Dip your summer rolls in soy sauce, sweet chilli or siracha.

Photo credit: Chef @vanda89vandi


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