Sunday, February 6, 2011

Pho by The Real Mamma Dang

Last night I went to my good friends' house for a special dinner. Homemade pho. Her parents were in town, so it was a chance for me to "learn" how to make it. She explained all the steps, and I got to watch, but I don't think she was ready to chance the outcome on my helping out! The house smelled wonderful, and the soup was amazing.

No recipe, but here's the gist.

Homemade Mamma Dang Pho
Beef Marrow
Ox Tail
Flank Steak
Onions, 3 whole
White Radish, 2 peeled
Star Anise
Fish Sauce
Rice Noodles
Bean Sprouts

for garnishing at the table:
Cilantro, Basil, Mint, Green Onions - chopped
Red Onion, thinly sliced
Additional Bean Sprouts
Sliced Lemon
Hoisin, Oyster and Sriracha Sauces

Boil beef marrow bones in a small pot of water to 'clean' them.

Meanwhile, bring a large pot of water to a simmer with the three large white onions.

After the bone marrow are clean (don't ask me how long this took...maybe 30 min?), rinse them in fresh water. Rinse the oxtail, and rinse the flank steak in water.

Add meat to big pot of simmering water. Add star anise, large chopped radish, and boil until the flank steak is chopstick tender (that is, you can easily stick a chopstick in it!)

Cook rice noodles.

Add broth, sliced meat and heated meat balls, bean sprouts and serve at the table with garnishes.

At least I think that's how it went down.

Thursday, February 3, 2011

Roasted Dinner (When we're lazy but still cook)

We probably have a roasted dinner once a week. This colorful dish comes together quickly, and just somehow made enough for a little leftovers.

Roasted Confetti Veggies with Tofu and Tempeh
Bunch Broccoli
Head Cauliflower, white
Head Cauliflower, purple
Half, large jalapeno, finely sliced
Half an onion, finely sliced
Super firm, vacuum packed tofu
paprika, to taste
cayenne, to taste

Heat oven to 425 deg.

Chop up veggies, but use that stalk! After cutting off florets, peel the base with the knife if really thick, then chop up into small pieces.

Put a good glug of olive oil on the bottom of two sheet pans.

On the sheet pans, mix cubed tofu, tempeh, chopped veggies and some salt, pepper, cayenne and paprika.

Bake in the oven 'til done' (you'll get used to me saying that). I'd give it 20-30 minutes. Make sure it's brown on the edges though, that's the best part.

1) Try to have vegetables be a size so they cook in the same amount of time. That is, all the florets the same size, but the stalk pieces smaller so they cook in the same amount of time as the florets!

2) Don't crowd the sheet pan. You want your veggies roasting, not steaming!

3) HOT oven! 425 works for my oven, experiment with yours.

Do you think we made enough??