Title: The Pho Cookbook, Easy and Adventurous Recipes for Vietnam’s Favorite Soup and Noodles
Author: Andrea Quynhgiao Nguyen
Is this part of a series? No, but she does have other cookbooks that specialize in different things, like dumplings and spring rolls.
Published: February 7th,2017
Thank you to Netgalley and Ten Speed Press for allowing me an eARC of this book in exchange for an honest review.
Pho (pronounced faww) is a very popular soup of fragrant broth, noodles, meat, and what ever else you wish to put in it basically. When I go to the mall (of all places!) there is a stall that sells beef pho, and I can get a large bowl with bean sprouts, basil, jalapenos, and lemon and lime on a side dish to add as I desire. Whenever I have a really bad day, that’s dinner. The broth is perfection, sweet and savory scents melding together in a way that I cannot find anywhere else. I love the large amount of noodles, and the perfectly sliced strips of beef. I like that much of the seasoning is decided by me, the customer. I will squeeze the citrus and add beansprouts, ignoring the jalapenos to make the perfect soup for me. When I lived in KC, there was a small pho restaurant where you could get many different types: chicken, beef, seafood, gluten free and vegan to name only a few. It also sold fried pho noodles, and bah min with pho noodles. There are so many different variations!
What drew me to this cookbook, besides the draw of being able to make my ultimate comfort food, was that I could learn about all the side dishes, and other things you could do as well. There are recipes for the broth from scratch, or with cheats like canned broth. It teaches to make one’s own hoisin sauce, and how to do side dishes like lovely rice-paper rolls. I loved that it explained all the components, and the tools that would be needed, as well as fixes for common place issues.
My only draw back was that it went on at length to tell us about the origins of Pho and how it went through the ages. While interesting at first, it quickly lost appeal. This is probably just a personal preference thing…. but I was actually wanting to skip pages so that I could get to recipes (and there are links through the eBook to do just that, but as this is a RFR book, I felt I should read it all). Still, with the easy explanations that recipes that will take you from novice to harder recipes, I would say this is a four star cookbook. It’s concise and easy to follow with many varying ideas.
I would add an adult content portion as always…. but it’s a cookbook. There isn’t any.
The book is out 2-7-2017 (tomorrow!). I recommend it for anyone that loves Vietnamese cooking.
Link to book: