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Author Notes: Nothing beats a giant steaming bowl of pho on a fall day. Slippery rice noodles, rich, succulent braised oxtail and a anise-coriander scented broth make for a mouth-watering meal. —stephanie le
Oxtail Pho Stock
- 1 piece ginger, 3-4 inches
- 2 onions, halved
- 1 teaspoon coriander seeds
- 1 teaspoon whole cloves
- 4 whole star anise
- 1 cinnamon stick
- 2 pounds oxtail
- 5 quarts water
- 1 large carrot, peeled and cut into large chunks
- 1 small daikon, peeled and cut into large chunks
- 2 tablespoons fish sauce
- 2 tablespoons sugar
- pho noodles
- sliced green onions
- roughly chopped cilantro
- red chilis
- Thai basil
- lime wedges
- hoisin sauce
- Toast your ginger and onions in the oven on broil until the onions are sweaty everything is nicely charred. Peel the ginger and onions and set aside until you’re ready to start your broth.
- Toast the coriander seeds, cloves, and star anise in a dry pan on low heat until they are aromatic, about 2-3 minutes. Tie the spices up in cheesecloth for easy removal from your soup.
- Put your oxtail pieces in a large pot with cold water and bring to a hard boil for 5-10 minutes to force the scum and impurities out. Drain, rinse the oxtails and wash your pot.
- Fill your clean pot with about 5 quarts of water and add the oxtail, ginger, onions, spice packet, carrot and daikon. Bring to a boil and lower to a very gentle simmer. Simmer for as long as you can; reducing it will intensify the flavour. I let my broth simmer for about 4 hours until the water reduced to 3 quarts. At this point take out the oxtails and set aside. Remove everything else from the stock and discard. Strain the stock into a new clean pot and cool before putting in the fridge overnight.
- The next day a large amount of fat will have coagulated on the top of your stock. Skim and discard. Gently heat the stock up and season with fish sauce and sugar. Add the sugar and fish sauce in increments until you’re happy with the flavour. Bring the stock to a roiling boil.
- Prepare your noodles according to the package, strain and place in a large bowl. Add a generous amount of oxtail meat (the stock will heat the meat up), top with broth, and garnishes. Enjoy!
- This recipe was entered in the contest for Your Best Recipe for Autumn Soup