Recently, some individual in my household (not mentioning names for fear of retribution) bought a “GINORMOUS,” 10 pound bag of carrots. Ok, so what, that they were organic, who the hell knows what to do with that many carrots??? Crickets, silence…times up, I know – no answers. With the impending storm coming, I was feeling like one of my cozy, curl up by the fireplace favs: Hot Pot/Stew Soup/Pho Bowl Thing. I’ve called it all that, cause I don’t follow any strict directions and tend to make whatever it is, somehow my own…plus, I like to use whatever is readily available in my fridge and pantry. And oh yeah, I will be using A LOT of carrots, by any means necessary. As well, some will say…you are nuts using Filet Mignon for a frig’in stew…but, it’s all the beef (outside of ground beef – burgers) that I had available…who cares…someone will eat it and it won’t go to waste!
Recipe: Beef Pho` Hot Pot – “Saamy Style”
Needed Dry Ingredients:
- Pepper Corn (photo key # 4)
- Fennel Seeds (photo key #2) – (this stuff reminds me of a BAD diet ingredient I tried once, recommended by my “nuts, fruit & Birkenstock wearing friend that was vegan)
- Coriander seeds (photo key #3) – mini balls that taste like citrus or lemon/orange zest (zest: skin of that fruit)
- Star Anise (photo key #1) – they look like tiny “ninja blade throwing stars” and smell/taste like black licorice
- CARROTS (the 10 lb bag that will never end…)
- Green beans or Peas or Broccoli or all of the above – as much as you like…ya gotta add something green
- 2 Onions – preferably large (out of onions? Use onion powder)
- Chicken/Beef/Vegetable broth, bouillon or paste – to taste…make sure not to over due, because of the salt, already in the bouillon/broth/paste!
- Optional: Bean Sprouts, Parsley, Mint, and Scallions/Green Onions as toppers when served
- Optional: but highly recommended – cheese cloth to place hard spices in and tie off. At the end of the boiling process, you can remove the sachet of herbs. Otherwise you will have to use a straining ladle to remove the spices. Cheesecloth sachet is not pictured.
Wet ingredients: Note – This requires you to taste the broth periodically, as the water heats up with all the dry ingredients boiling…cause I’m all about how it tastes as you progress along in the cooking process!
- Any size pot of water (depends on how many will eat or if you desire mega left overs) – start with 3/4 level of water in your pot. You don’t want to have an over flow when you add the veggies, meat and noodles. As you cook and the water reduces, you may add more.
- Too this water add: Onion – add as much onions, as you like to taste
- Too this water add: Garlic – in whole form and/or powder form…whatever you have on avail – again to taste
- Too this water add: All dry spices named above – to taste…as it boils and you check the taste, add more of one spice or other. Note: You may wish to place all of the hard spices into a cheese cloth tied off, because you will need to strain them out before putting the noodles, veggies and beef into the boiling pot- these spices are, the coriander seed, fennel seed, star anaise and pepper corn..
When ALMOST ready to serve/ or right before, strain out any fennel, peppercorn, star anise & coriander seeds. Side note: some people tie it up in cheese cloth for an easier removal and through it in the boiling pot. After you remove this, add the Beef & Noddles to the “boiling stew/rue:”
- Add the Noodles – Can be Rice Noodles, Egg noodles or basic Italian Noodles (photo key #8) – any noodle you choose – place them into the boiling hot soup!
- Add slithers of Filet Mignon or any sliced Beef – sliced against the grain (which is perpendicular to the visible grain line of the meat ) – see photo below -(Ok stop saying that I’m wasting good filet mignon). Normally people use the following beef cuts: chuck roast, brisket, rib roast, sirloin, etc. Even mixing Chicken and Fish or ALL OF THE ABOVE will DO!
- Optional: garnish with mint, parsley, bean sprouts, scallions/green onions
Filet mignon cut on the cross grain to make thin slithers