Thai Beef Noodle Soup


1 Beef Neck (I love this cut but it's difficult to find - you can use many different types of 2 Garlic
3 Thai basil (it is more aromatic - but you can use sweet Italian as a substitute); fresh 4 Morning glory (aka. water spinach) or pak kana (aka. Chinese broccoli)
7 Cinnamon bark
8 Thick sweet soy sauce (you can use regular soy sauce if you don't have this)
10 Fish sauce (aka. nam pla)
11 Lime
12 Dry or fresh rice noodles (the thickness depends on your taste - I like sen lek which is the middle thic


Put beef neck (approximately 3-4 lbs depending on how many you will be cooking for but this will provide at least 8 hearty bowls of broth and beef with your noodles), in a big stock pot, covered in water.
Add star anise (2-3 is sufficient, less if you don't like the taste of anise), 1 cinnamon bark (small size is fine), white pepper (1 tspn, you can add more to taste later), 1 tbspn of thick sweet soy sauce (if you use regular soy sauce, add 1 tbspn sugar).
Bring to a rolling boil and let it simmer for a longgggg time (depending on how fresh the meat is) it should take about 2-3 hrs for the meat to begin to fall off the bone).
Once it's cooked a while add some fish sauce to taste (at least 1 tbspn if not more).
Meanwhile: soak the rice noodles (if they are dry) in water
Slice up some shallots into thin half moons; slice up limes (NOT lemons which are yellow in color and much too sweet); wash the basil and leave on the stems; wash the bean sprouts.
Coarsely mince up some garlic and fry in vegetable oil so it's crispy then leave to the side in a small dish.
Make a small dish of prik nam pla with dried chile powder and fish sauce so you have a nice chile sauce for those that want more salt/more chili in their soup.
Cook the noodles for as long as the type you bought says and strain (at this point add the morning glory or chinese broccoli for the last 30 secs with your noodles), then add a small portion to each bowl, add raw bean sprouts on top, pour broth over it with pieces of shredded beef (avoid the star anise and cinnamon bark), serve to each person and have the following on the side to add as you individually please:
Basil, lime, prik nam pla, crispy garlic, shallots




This is a version of Thai Beef Noodle Soup with all the essence/origins intact, save for the cut of beef you choose to use and what is available to you. From a Chinese medicinal cooking perspective this recipe is good for you if you are having trouble with your digestion and are experiencing excessive diarrhea or stomach cramps due to cold foods; it is also very good for those that are anemic, post partum, post menses, post surgergy where there has been blood loss. Here is the link to more information on this recipe:


8 servings


Thursday, December 10, 2009 - 4:44pm


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