I have become obsessed with pho, I'm going to post on the Chicago board the results of my latest purchases from restaurants, but I think I am building up to making some at home also. So here are a couple of mysteries to unravel.
What is the herb that I've seen in most of the phos I have bought -- long leaf (4 inches or more?) by about 3/4 inch wide, very sawtoothed. (I'm embarassed to say I apparently wolfed it down so fast I can't remember what this particular herb tasted like...)
The sauce that is provided to add to the pho-- something red and something brown-- sriracha and hoison? Or what?
I've been buying it and bringing it home to eat, means half an hour trip or more, so I have to heat up the broth and then toss in the meat, noodles and herbs. I take it I am not really going for much cooking-- I get the broth hot enough to turn the meat grey, but the herbs don't fully wilt. Is this right?
And Erik, thanks for the tip on where to get fresh noodles on Argyle. Unbelieveably inexpensive. Can I freeze fresh noodles, or how long can I keep them in the fridge?
I bought some pho broth base, Por Kwan brand. I know this is seriously violating the whole idea of making a wonderful broth from scratch, but I thought I would try it, and try assembling the whole thing that way once, since it is rare that I have time for making broth from scratch. Has anyone used this or any other brand, is it something that can be dressed up with some spices, etc., or is it a total waste of time?
Thanks in advance for any useful pointers.