Vietnamese Pho with Tender Chicken and Fresh Herbs

Vietnamese Pho with Tender Chicken and Fresh Herbs

Pho is a traditional Vietnamese soup known for its fragrant broth, tender meat, and delicate rice noodles. This recipe features succulent chicken, aromatic herbs, and aromatic spices, creating a comforting and flavorful dish that is perfect for any occasion.

– 1 whole chicken (about 3-4 lbs)
– 1 large yellow onion, halved
– 4-inch piece of ginger, halved lengthwise
– 3 quarts water
– 2 cinnamon sticks
– 2 star anise
– 4 cloves
– 1 tsp coriander seeds
– 1 tbsp salt
– 2 tbsp fish sauce
– 1 tbsp sugar
– 1 lb rice noodles (pho noodles)
– Fresh herbs: Thai basil, cilantro, mint
– 2 cups bean sprouts
– 2-3 green onions, thinly sliced
– 1 lime, cut into wedges
– Fresh chili peppers, sliced (optional)
– Hoisin sauce and sriracha sauce for serving

1. Char the Aromatics: Place the onion and ginger halves directly on the burner grate over medium-high heat (or under a broiler) until charred, about 5 minutes. Turn occasionally to ensure even charring. This step adds a depth of flavor to the broth.

2. Prepare the Broth: In a large pot, add the whole chicken, charred onion, and ginger. Pour in 3 quarts of water. Bring to a boil over high heat, then reduce the heat to low. Skim off any foam or impurities that rise to the surface.

3. Spices and Seasoning: Add the cinnamon sticks, star anise, cloves, coriander seeds, salt, fish sauce, and sugar to the pot. Simmer gently for 1.5 to 2 hours, until the chicken is tender and cooked through.

4. Prepare the Noodles: While the broth is simmering, cook the rice noodles according to the package instructions. Drain and rinse them under cold water to stop the cooking process. Set aside.

5. Remove the Chicken: Carefully remove the cooked chicken from the pot and set aside to cool slightly. Once cool enough to handle, shred the chicken into bite-sized pieces, discarding the skin and bones.

6. Strain the Broth: Strain the broth through a fine mesh sieve to remove the solids. Return the clear broth to the pot and keep warm over low heat.

7. Assemble the Pho: Divide the cooked rice noodles among serving bowls. Top with shredded chicken and a generous handful of fresh herbs, bean sprouts, and green onions.

8. Serve: Ladle the hot broth over the noodles and toppings. Serve with lime wedges, fresh chili peppers (if using), and hoisin and sriracha sauces on the side for extra flavor customization.

Enjoy your comforting bowl of Vietnamese Pho with Tender Chicken and Fresh Herbs!