What the Pho?

That’s basically what I said when I got up yesterday and it was snowing. Idaho weather is fickle, to say the least. Last year we experienced “snowmagedon” or “snowpocalypse”. This year we enjoyed 60+ degree weather the second half of January and into February. The last 2 weeks have a been a bit nippier, but dry. This weekend, however, snow. Not a ton of it, but snow none the less.

My body has had a hell of a time regulating my temperature with all the fluctuations, which is obnoxious. And both of my housemates have been sick multiple times this year. I think I had a sinus infection a while back, but I’ve been healthy otherwise. And I’d like to keep it that way, thanks.

How many of you are familiar with pho? (Pronounced “fuh”, in case you’re wondering.) It’s a Vietnamese street food consisting of savory broth, rice noodles, herbs, meat, and veggies. I was introduced to pho on my first visit to Seattle. If I recall, the friend I was visiting was fending off a cold at the time, so insisted on pho for lunch as soon as I arrived. My bowl could have fed me 3x over and seemed to be bottomless. It was warm and savory, with just enough spice to clean out the sinuses. True comfort food, let me tell ya. IMG_2939

I’ve seen a few pho places in Boise, but I rarely get to that end of the valley so have had to be industrious. My version isn’t quite the same as what you’ll find in a proper restaurant, but it is still satisfying. And with the turn in weather, I decided it had been too long since my last batch. Luckily, it’s such a flexible recipe that I normally have everything I need already in the fridge or pantry: rice noodles, broth, various veggies, etc.

One new ingredient I tried this time is miso. I bought some recently, after reading a few bloggers rave about it, and have been adding it to a variety of dishes. I don’t know if it’s a traditional ingredient in pho, but for the homemade version, it is definitely a game changer. Miso is basically concentrated umami, the fifth taste (you know, sweet-salty-sour-bitter?). It is savory. Oh so savory. I believe pho is usually made with a bone broth, so full of savory, meaty flavor. In my case, I make it with veggie broth so it tends to be a bit lacking in flavor depth. Miso gives it that extra something, you know?

One other thing I love about pho is that it’s crazy quick and easy to make. It basically takes the time and skill of boiling water/liquid and chopping vegetables. I use my electric kettle to boil water for the noodles, throw the broth and seasonings into a sauce pot and bring to a boil, chop the veggies, and assemble. It’s an easy, quick lunch or dinner. It’s full of healthy, nutritious veggies to feed your body and fend of sickness. And depending on how much sriracha you add, it’ll thoroughly clear out your sinuses. All around win!




Currently craving: Baked goods…. like cake…I think. Still searching for a quick and easy cake recipe for which I already have the ingredients.

Currently playing: Diablo III Season 13.


Ingredients – for 1 serving 

2 cups broth – I used vegetable.

1 Tbsp mild miso

1 Tbsp ginger root – peeled and diced

1 tps hoysin sauce

Rice noodles – found on the Asian isle in most grocery stores

fresh veggies – I used zucchini, red bell pepper, broccoli, and edamame pods, but that’s just what I had on hand.

fresh basil to garnish

Sriracha – optional


  1. Place rice noodles in a large bowl. Cover with boiling water and let sit until done.
  2. Pour broth into a small sauce pot. Add miso, ginger, and hoysin, and bring to a boil. Remove ginger bits before serving.
  3. Chop veggies. You could cook them in a pan with more hoysin sauce or sesame oil. Depends on how “done” you like your veggies.
  4. Place cooked noodles into bowl.
  5. Place raw or cooked veggies on top.
  6. Ladle broth on top of noodles and veggies, covering them.
  7. Let sit for a few minutes to warm the veggies.
  8. Top with fresh basil and sriracha to taste.

Asian Food Vegetables

Whitney View All →

Hello! I’m Whitney and this is my home for all things food and life.

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