Muffins recipes

National dish of Vietnam

flag of Vietnam

  • Independence: 15. 4. 1992
  • Capital: Hanoi
  • Official language: Vietnamese
  • Population: 90 388 000
  • Area: 331 210 km2
  • International code: VN
  • Currency: đồng (VND)
map of Vietnam



  • 3 lbs oxtails
  • 2 gallons water
  • 4 inches ginger
  • 2 onions
  • 1/2 cup nuoc nam (fish sauce)
  • 10 whole star anise
  • 5 whole cloves
  • 1 cinnamon stick ("1-4 inch")
  • 1/2 teaspoon fennel seed
  • 2 tablespoons salt
  • 4 bay leaves
  • 1 lb rice noodles (preferably "1/4 inch")
  • 1 bunch scallion, sliced
  • 1 bunch cilantro
  • 1 bunch basil leaves
  • 1 bunch mint leaf
  • 1 thinly sliced onion
  • 4 cups bean sprouts
  • 2 limes, cut into wedges
  • 1 lb filet mignon or 1 lb top sirloin steak, sliced very thinly
  • hoisin sauce
  • sriracha sauce (hot chile sauce)
Pho is national food (dish) of Vietnam


Place the oxtails in a large stockpot and add the water. Bring the water to a full boil, then reduce heat and bring water to a simmer. Scrape any scum off the top of the water and discard. Cut the onion in half and peel off the outer portion. Place on a baking sheet along with the ginger and broil in the over about 20 minutes, making sure not to blacken it. Turn over halfway through. Allow to cool. Place the star anise, cloves, cinnamon, and fennel seeds in a piece of cheesecloth and tie it shut with twine. Add the spice pack, onion halves, ginger, bay leaves, salt, and fish sauce to the broth. Allow the broth to simmer at least 5-6 hours (to your taste) uncovered. Remove the spice pack, onions, ginger, and bay leaves and discard. Remove the oxtails and set them aside. When cool enough to handle, remove the meat and trim of any remaining fat. Set the meat aside and return the bones to the broth. Allow the broth to simmer another hour or two until you achieve the desired taste then remove the bones. You may adjust the salt, but you don't want it too salty. Soak the rice noodles in COLD water 15-20 minutes, while starting a large pot of water boiling. While the noodles are soaking, place the cilantro, basil leaves, mint leaves, sliced onions, sliced scallions, and bean sprouts on a serving platter. After the noodles have soaked, place them in the boiling water and allow to cook until tender, but don't let them get mushy. It should only take a couple minutes. Rinse the noodles in cold water if not serving immediately. When ready to eat (you can do this earlier, like when you're boiling the water for the noodles) return the broth to a rolling boil. Place the noodles in a serving bowl and arrange the sliced meat (leftover oxtail meat if desired) over them. Ladle the boiling broth over the noodles and beef, making sure to cover the meat. Serve and allow each person to place the desired amount of garnish from the platter, hoisin sauce, and sriracha in their own bowl to taste.


Pho is a Vietnamese noodle soup consisting of broth, linguine-shaped rice noodles, a few herbs, and meat. It is a popular street food in Vietnam and the specialty of a number of restaurant chains around the world. Pho is primarily served with either beef or chicken. The Hanoi and Saigon styles of pho differ by noodle width, sweetness of broth, and choice of herbs. The origin of pho and its name is a subject of scholarly debate.

Among all the Vietnamese dishes that came to the attention of the people in the western hemisphere, nothing else has received such tremendous acceptance as pho. Pho is considered as the national dish of Vietnam, and it has captured the fascination of so many people in the west because of its deceptive simplicity and its complex flavors. Pho is the perfect comfort food – warm, hearty and deliciously refreshing. In Vietnam it’s the common people’s food. It’s street food. Pho can also be seen as a mirror that reflects Vietnamese heritage and way of life. A dish that is steeped in tradition, pho is closely tied to Vietnam that the history of pho can read as a parallel to the history of its country of origin itself in the last hundred years. With the migration of Vietnamese across the globe after the Fall of Saigon in 1975, the national dish of Vietnam came to grace the tables of people of different heritages, thus leading to the colorful evolution of pho throughout the years.

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