3 tablespoons Thai fish sauce (such as Three Crabs)
1 teaspoon white peppercorns
5 whole cloves
2 star anise
1 large yellow onion, peeled and quartered
1 cinnamon stick
2 cups vertically sliced onion
12 ounces wide rice stick noodles (banh pho)
2 cups fresh bean sprouts
12 ounces eye-of-round roast, trimmed and cut into 1/16-inch slices
2 cups cilantro leaves
1 cup Thai basil leaves
4 red Thai chiles, seeded and thinly sliced
8 lime wedges
1 tablespoon hoisin sauce (optional)
How to Make It
To prepare broth, heat a large stockpot over medium-high heat. Add oxtail, ginger, and shallots; sauté 8 minutes or until ginger and shallots are slightly charred. Add water and next 8 ingredients (through cinnamon stick); bring to a boil. Reduce heat, and simmer 4 hours. Strain broth through a sieve into a large bowl; discard solids. Return broth to pan, and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to medium, and cook until reduced to 10 cups (about 30 minutes). Skim fat from surface; discard fat. Keep warm.
To prepare remaining ingredients, add sliced onion to broth. Place noodles in a large bowl, and cover with boiling water. Let stand 20 minutes. Drain. Place 1/3 cup bean sprouts in each of 6 soup bowls. Top each serving with 1 1/3 cup noodles and 2 ounces eye-of-round. Carefully ladle 1 2/3 cups boiling broth over each serving (boiling broth will cook the meat). Serve with cilantro, basil, chiles, limes, and hoisin, if desired.
Outstanding! This is my go-to soup when not feeling well or for that cold winter night. To make it easier, I use beef stock as the base (I still "make the stock"). I typically can't find diakon radish so I either omit or I use turnip. I also add lemon-grass and instead of sliced thai chilies, I use sambal olek.
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