It's been a busy but great couple of days.
Last night Moet Hennessy had a pumping function for a hundred beautiful cognac ladies and about 12 well out-numbered men.
I almost felt sorry for the blokes.
Live stations of spring rolls, liquid nitrogen ice cream, Pad Thai, sushi and Vietnamese salads were attacked like a honey-covered man outside a bee hive, and all went well.
We also have some fantastic guests in-house at leisure right now too, so we've been doing tours of the herb garden and making some really fun stuff off the menu for breakfast, lunch and dinner for various people.
It pretty much means no idle hands, and no time for the Devil's Work. Probably the only downside
Somy and Srini from Singapore asked me about a Vegetarian Pho yesterday, and it sort of threw me, as so much of the flavour in Pho comes from beef or chicken.
At lunch time today they asked if they could actually order one, so we went out the back and came up with a recipe.
I started off hoping to not disappoint them too badly, but three of us got together and made the following version and it was so good that it will definitely be going on the menu.
Deep Pho taste, nice colour, and 100% vegetarian & vegan.
And because it's a rice noodle soup, it's also gluten free. And fat free. And low GI.
Without further ado, here's the Vegan Pho recipe.
If you have any questions, feedback or alternative versions, please give me a holler in the comments section.
Chef Shane’s Vegetarian and Vegan Pho Recipe
Vegetarian Pho Stock
45 Ginger root (unpeeled)
30 Garlic cloves, peeled, whole
60 Onion, brown or white, thick strips
40 Carrot strips (or trimmings)
2ea.Asian Cardamom pods
1pc Cinnamon stick
2ea. Star Anise
Salt to taste
½ tsp MSG (optional) or Knorr Vegetable stock (Optional)
- Using a wire rack, char the ginger, garlic, shallots, cardamom, cinnamon and onion over an open gas flame until lightly blackened and aromatic
- Put into cold water with carrot, celery and remaining ingredients
- Simmer for 15 minutes to infuse the flavour (Up to 1 hour very gentle simmer)
- Strain the stock and adjust seasoning. Keep some onion, cardamom, anise and the shallots to serve with the soup)
Pho Noodles (Fresh, or alternatively dry, soaked in warm water)
Cauliflower (Lightly charred for taste & colour over a wire rack on an open flame)
Baby corn (fresh)
Bean sprouts (Cleaned and Blanched briefly in boiling water)
Chopped sawtooth coriander
Ngo Gai leaf (Fresh sawtooth coriander)
Fresh Local Vietnamese or Thai basil
Chilli (Large Mild or Small & spicy to your personal taste)
- When heating the noodles, heat in boiling water, but drain well so they don’t make the soup watery.
- Don't be scared to get some black colour on the onions, shallots, garlic and cauliflower. It will give colour and depth of flavour to the soup. Don't burn though, or it will become bitter. Light charring is good – patches of black, but not solid