apict2014-01-22_10-43-46-AM

Broth:
6 cups vegetable broth
3 large shallots/onions, sliced (1 cup)
½ cup dried shiitake mushrooms
10 cloves garlic, peeled and crushed
3 Tbs. soy sauce
12 ¼-inch-thick coins fresh ginger
1 Tbs. brown sugar
1 Tbs. rice wine vinegar
in a bag:
1 tsp. ground black pepper
2 cinnamon sticks
2 star anise
5-6 fresh basil stems, leaves reserved for soup
5-6 cilantro stems, leaves reserved for soup

Pho:
1 8-oz. pkg. rice noodles, optional
1 8-oz. pkg. firm tofu, thinly sliced
2 cups sprouts
2 cups watercress/bok choy
4 green onions, sliced (½ cup)
¼ cup chopped cilantro
1 cup fresh basil leaves
1 lime, cut into wedges, optional

1. To make Broth: Place all ingredients in large pot with 8 cups water. Cover, and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to medium-low, and simmer, covered, 1 hour. Strain broth, and return to pot. Discard solids.

2. To make Pho: Cook rice noodles according to package directions. Drain, and rinse under cold water. Divide among 6 large soup bowls. Ladle Broth over noodles, and top with tofu, sprouts, watercress, and green onions. Serve cilantro, basil, and lime wedges on the side to be stirred into soup.