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Banh Pho Bo (Beef Noodle Soup)

3 large onions
1 tbs peanut oil
5 lb beef and chicken bones (choose ones with meat as well)
4 ginger slices, julienned
2 carrots, julienned
1 small cinnamon stick
1 star anise
1 tbs whole black peppercorn
2 garlic clove, crushed
1/2 lb bean sprouts
1/2 lb beef sirloin,finely sliced
1 scallion, finely sliced
1/4 cup chopped cilantro
4 chilies, sliced
2 limes (cut into wedges)
8 oz rice sticks,soaked in hot and drained
3 tbs Nuoc mam (Vietnamese fish sauce)
Black pepper to taste

Slice 2 of the onions into 1/4 inch slices Heat 1 tbs oil in a
frying pan and add the sliced onions Cook, stirring, until the
outside has browned Remove and drain Slice the remaining onion into
paper-thin slices and set aside Rinse the bones and place in a
stockpot Cover with cold water and bring slowly to a boil Reduce
heat and simmer, uncovered (For a clear broth skim off foam) After
10,15 minutes, add browned onion and ginger, carrots, cinnamon,
cardamom, star anise, cloves, garlic and peppercorns Bring to a
boil Simmer the stock, partially covered for 6 to 12 hours, skimming
regularly If necessary add more water to keep the bones covered
Strain the stock, skim off, and discard any fat

Arrange the sliced beef on a platter. Garnish with reserved
white and green onion On another platter, arrange the bean sprouts,
coriander, chiles and limes Meanwhile, plunge the rice sticks in
boiling water to heat and drain Place equal portions in each soup
bowl and cover to keep warm Heat beef stock to boiling and season
with fish sauce and pepper Pour into a soup tureen or chafing dish
At the table, place the soup on a portable warmer to keep hot.
Offer each guest a bowl of warm rice noodles Each diner adds some
beef and onion to a bowl and Ladle the hot stock over the meat,
stirring to cook the meat Add the bean sprouts, coriander, chiles,
and lime to taste. Enjoy with chopsticks and a soup spoon


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