Flat rice noodles (Phở)

* Common names: Flat rice noodles, Rice Sticks or “Phở (Pho)” in Vietnamese

* How they look like: Fresh Pho are thick, flat, extremely soft and elastic. The dried ones, however, have a semi-transparent color, and are usually tangled into a bundle. 

* Where to get them (outside Vietnam): Pho can be found in Asian groceries or Asian supermarkets, normally in dried forms. Just be careful to not mistake it with rice vermicelli (the thin round rice noodles), Chinese egg noodles or glass noodles.

* How to serve them:

– Boil the dried noodles in 8 – 10 minutes until they turn soft (softer than al-dente but not too soft). Drain the noodles, then immediately soak them with boiled water in 2 – 3 minutes. Drain again and shake very well to remove all excess water. Soaking the noodles in hot water is the secret to keep them soft while prevent them from sticking to each other. The reason is that hot water helps to remove starch released from the noodles while being cooked.

If you want to use Pho for stir-fried dishes, it’s better to make them a bit under-cooked so that they won’t get too soft when you stir-fried them with other ingredients.

– There are pleentyyyy of yummy dishes to cook using this ingredient. One of the most common ways is to make beef or chicken Pho (beef/ chicken noodles soup), in which Pho is served in aromatic, hot, rich and delicious beef or chicken broth with a handful of different herbs. In addition, stir-fried Pho with different types of meat and veggies are also the type of “quick and yummy” meals that are very popular among Vietnamese and foreigners.

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