The October 2009 Daring Cooks’ challenge was brought to us by Jaden of the blog Steamy Kitchen. The recipes are from her new cookbook, The Steamy Kitchen Cookbook. I’ll be honest here – I wasn’t particularly excited about this challenge. I’ve made pho before, and I love it, but I didn’t want to do a second post on it. Plus, the main recipe presented to us was for chicken pho, and I don’t usually care for chicken soups. So I dragged my feet on completing this challenge and didn’t make it until last night. I’m glad I did though, because it was really good, and really EASY. Crazy easy! 90% of the ingredients are things that I generally have on hand (and the other 10% could be omitted or swapped) so this is a great recipe to keep in the back of your mind for when dinner hasn’t been planned. And the best part is that it makes very few dishes, so cleanup is a breeze!
- 2 tbsp. whole coriander seeds
- 4 whole cloves
- 2 whole star anise
- 8 cups chicken stock (store bought or homemade)
- 2 boneless chicken thighs
- ½ onion
- 1 3-inch chunk of ginger
- 1 Tbs sugar
- 1 to 2 Tbs fish sauce
- 8 oz udon noodles, prepared according to package
- 2 cups bean sprouts, washed and tails pinched off
- Fresh cilantro
- ½ cup shaved onion
- ½ lime, cut into wedges
- Sriracha chili sauce
- Hoisin sauce
- Sliced fresh chili peppers
To make the Broth: Place onion and ginger under the broil to char it. Broil for about 10 minutes, or until the skin of the onion is dark and the ginger is soft. Peel the onion. Peel the ginger and cut it into several chunks. Meanwhile, heat a frying pan over medium heat. Add the coriander seeds, cloves and star anise and toast until fragrant, about 3-4 minutes. Immediately spoon out the spices to avoid burning.
In a large pot, add ginger, onion, spices, stock, chicken, sugar, and fish sauce. Bring to a boil, then reduce and simmer for 20 minutes, skimming occasionally. Remove chicken and shred with your fingers or with two forks. Strain the broth and discard the solids. Diving chicken and noodles into bowls and ladle the broth over them.
Serve the remaining ingredients at the table, so each diner can customize their own bowl.