The initial impetus for creating this blog was to chronical the recipes that my mom has passed down to me over the years. But, thusfar, none of my posts have been about the foods that I have learned to cook from her. So, in an effort to remain true to this original undertaking and to keep myself committed to this blog (sidenote: I have a tendancy to approach new hobbies with intense fervor only to quickly abandon them-hopefully, this isn’t going to be one of those short-lived, fleeting interests), I’ve decided to start a weekly series, vendredi vietnamien, which translates to Vietnamese Fridays. Through this series, I hope to share some of the tasty goodies my mom fed us while growing up, as well as, the dishes that I have picked up from the mister and his maman during my year as an unemployed housewife.
First up in this series is pan-fried rice noodles with beef. This dish has become a staple in our household, because it is a simple and tasty one-plate meal that can be thrown together relatively quickly. And, there is always at least one serving left over for lunch the next day! While still living in Austin, I made a version of this dish with less than stellar results. To avoid the lumpy mess that I ended up with, I’ve since learned from my husband that the trick is to cook the ingredients separately and to not stir the noodles vigorously.
Pâtes de Riz Sautées au Bœuf
1 package (400g) of fresh wide rice noodles (aka bánh phở)
400-500g of beef, thinly sliced
500g of bean sprouts
1 onion, cut into wedges
2-3 cloves of garlic, minced
3-4 green scallions, cut into 3cm pieces
0.5 tspn dark soy sauce, or to taste
1-1.5 tspn light soy sauce, or to taste
cilantro, to garnish
1. Season the beef with the some salt, pepper and garlic powder to your liking. Set aside.
2. To cook the noodles, fill a pot with water and bring it to a simmer, not a rolling boil. Add the noodles and cook for about 30-40 seconds and drain in a colander. Toss the noodles with about a quarter of a teaspoon (or more, depending on your taste) of seasame oil, adding a few drops at a time to ensure the oil becomes evenly distributed. As with the seasame oil, toss the noodles with the soy sauces a little bit at a time. Set aside.
3. In a large frying pan or wok, heat some oil over high heat. Add the onions and sauté until they become fragrant. Then add in the bean sprouts. Once the bean sprouts are cooked, put on a plate and set aside.
4. Return the pan to high heat and add some oil. Once the oil is hot, toss in the garlic and cook until fragrant, being careful not to burn them. Stir in the beef and sauté, adding in the scallions halfway through.
5. Once the beef is cooked to about medium-rare, add back in the bean sprouts and noodles. Toss gently and season to your taste. However, you will not likely need any additional seasoning, since each of the ingredients were seasoned as they were cooked during steps 2-4. Garnish with sprigs of cilantro and serve with Siracha sauce.