PhysioWife’s Pho

Today’s dinner was cooked by PhysioWife!

half pound ground veal (or pork)
one bunch mustard greens
two cloves garlic, finely chopped
two teaspoons fresh ginger, finely grated
four dried Thai bird’s eye chiles, crushed
3/4 teaspoon dried red pepper flakes
fresh-ground black pepper
one splash dry vermouth
half teaspoon cumin seeds, crushed
cooking oil
four cups chicken broth
four sliced scallions
one teaspoon Vietnamese fish sauce
two tablespoons soy sauce
balsamic vinegar
La Yu hot pepper oil
half pound flat rice noodles


Mix the ground meat well with the garlic, ginger, Thai and red pepper, and cumin.


Sautee in a little oil until lightly browned, breaking it up thoroughly with your spoon, seasoning with some fresh-ground black pepper and a little bit of salt. Be very careful with salt until the very end, because you will be adding a relatively unpredictable amount in the fish sauce and soy sauce.


Deglaze with a splash of dry vermouth.


Add the chicken broth, bring to a boil, and then simmer on medium for about ten minutes.


Throw in the mustard greens and most of the scallions, and continue to simmer while you boil the rice noodles.


Put the rice noodles in bowls.


Soup is finished. At this point you can salt to taste, or allow the diners to adjust themselves with soy sauce.


Pour the soup over the noodles, and garnish with some more scallions and a squeeze of lime. Serve with soy sauce, balsamic vinegar, and La Yu hot chile oil.


Add desired condiments, which for me were soy sauce, balsamic vinegar, and La Yu, and gently mix around the noodles so that they distribute loosely in the soup. When you use chop sticks to extract a portion of noodles, the ground meat should come along as a coat on the noodles. YUM! (Note: this is a pretty close rendition of a recipe from this month’s Bon Appetit magazine.)


  1. alaska says

    You will have to microwave it tonight ( unless, of course, you are in China). Bon appetit MF (as you call your friends in 2014).

  2. mario berettini says

    1. Have witnessed CPP’s writing in this blog for a number of years
    2. It never occurred to me that this MF could be so sweet and romantic.
    3. Wow !

    Happy New Year from Malta!


  3. DB says

    I tried the recipe (excellent!), but you never mentioned when to add the “1 teaspoon Vietnamese fish sauce”. Maybe it doesn’t matter: i tossed it in with the mustard greens. It was Japanese fish sauce ‘cuz I’m sure it goes better with Japanese soy sauce.

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