serves 4 Difficulty
For broth: 1 onion 2” piece of ginger 2-1/2 lbs beef bones 3 quarts water ½ cinnamon stick 2 teaspoons coriander seeds 2 teaspoons fennel seeds 2 whole star anise 3 whole cloves ¾ Tablespoons kosher salt 1/8 cup fish sauce 1 ounce sugar
For bowls: 1 lb small dried rice noodles, soaked in hot water then drained when soft 1/2 lb flank steak, sliced very thin 1 cup loosely packed cilantro, mint, basil 1 lime, cut into wedges 1 serrano chile, thinly sliced 2 cups bean sprouts Sriracha hot sauce
Place onion and ginger on a baking sheet and place under the broiler until charred on all sides. You can also do this directly on a burner of your stove. When cool, remove outer skin of onion and ginger. You can easily remove the ginger peeling by scraping off with the edge of a spoon. Slice onion and ginger. Fill a large stock pot with water and add bones; bring to a boil. Boil for 10 minutes then drain, rinse bones and rinse out pot. Refill pot with bones and 3 quarts water. Bring to a boil then reduce heat to a simmer. Remove any scum that forms on top of water. Add onion, ginger, spices, sugar, fish sauce and salt. Simmer for 3 hours. Strain the broth and return to pot. Adjust seasonings to taste; adding more salt, sugar or fish sauce as needed. Heat broth again and keep at a simmer. Place equal amounts of rice noodles, bean sprouts, fresh herbs and sliced steak in deep soup bowls and ladle hot broth on top to fill bowls. Garnish with hot sauce and fresh lime juice. Serve immediately.