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  • Writer's pictureLimetree

Scratch Pho Broth

Makes 2 quarts. Great for breakfast with your rice noodles!

Not sure when I picked up the habit – probably travels in Japan or China – but my go-to breakfast these days is rice noodles and broth, known as Pho. This recipe is not the full-bodied Vietnamese Pho soup that can serve as a dinner meal, but a lighter breakfast version. I usually make a batch – a couple of quarts – that will last me a few days. These ingredients pack a bunch of antioxidants and make a nourishing tonic to start the day.

I start with fresh ginger, turmeric if available, lemongrass and garlic and simmer for maybe 10 mins. (Galangal, similar to ginger, can add an earthy, piney, almost menthol flavor). Then I add a few veggies (cabbage, fennel, celery, carrots, broccoli, shallots, etc) and other spices (such as celery salt, chili or cayenne pepper, herbes de Provence) along with veggie or chicken bouillon and simmer for 3-4 mins. Fresh basil is good to add at the end.

For serving I prefer fresh rice noodles (just add boiling water and steep). Dried noodles, you’ll have to boil 3 mins. I sometimes add a poached egg, or even cooked shrimp. As an alternative to soy sauce, I use Bragg liquid aminos, as well as a squirt of fresh lime juice. Fresh basil or arugula is also a nice garnish.


2 quarts (8 cups) water

1 tablespoon chopped ginger

½ tablespoon chopped turmeric

1 stalk lemongrass cut into 2’’ lengths

½ tablespoon sliced galangal

Spices to taste per above

2 cups cut vegetables (broccoli, fennel, carrots, celery, scallions, cabbage)

2 cubes veggie or chicken bouillon (or 2 teaspoons Better Than Bouillon base)


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