Having driven my family crazy with my obsession love of Thai food, I thought it was time to venture elsewhere into Asian cuisine. A rainy Sydney day recently gave me the perfect opportunity to make this delicious soup, which both my Husband and I love. I do think it’s worth the (small) extra effort of roasting the beef ribs and vegetables, as it adds richness to the flavour of the soup.


For the stock:
1 kg beef ribs/soup bones
1 large onion, peeled and halved
2 carrots, peeled and chopped roughly
2 celery stalks, chopped roughly
4 garlic cloves, peeled and crushed
Olive oil
Salt and pepper
2 cinnamon sticks
4 star anise
1 tbspn peppercorns
10 cm piece of ginger, peeled and sliced
2 tbspn fish sauce
500 g gravy beef or beef osso bucco
Approx 4 litres water

To serve:
Kecap manis
Soy sauce
Rice noodles (pho, pad Thai, or similar), prepared according to packet
250 g beef fillet or sirloin, sliced thinly against the grain
1 white or spring onion, sliced thinly
A handful of chopped coriander
One red chilli, finely diced
A handful of mint leaves, whole
Two cups of bean sprouts
One lime

1. Pre heat the oven to 220 C. In a large baking dish put the beef ribs, onion, carrot, celery, garlic, olive oil, and a little salt and pepper. Bake them uncovered for about forty-five minutes, until golden. Drain off any extra oil or fat and put everything in a large stock pot. Add the remaining ingredients for the stock. The amount of water will depend on the size of the pot. Bring the stock to the boil, skimming if necessary, then reduce to a simmer. Simmer for about two hours, longer if possible.

2. When you are ready to serve the soup, strain the stock into a clean saucepan and keep it warm on a low simmer. Take the beef bones and gravy beef/ osso bucco, and when they are cool enough to handle shred the meat and add to the soup. Taste the soup for seasoning, I usually like to add a tablespoon or two of both kecap manis and regular soy. Prepare the noodles, beef fillets, onion, herbs, and chilli.

3. Place some noodles in a deep soup bowl, then top with the raw sliced beef fillet or sirloin. Ladle over some of the soup, which will cook the beef. Finish with a few slices of onion, and a sprinkling of herbs and chilli, and some bean sprouts. Finish with a squeeze of lime juice and a splash of soy.

4 Thoughts

  1. I love a good Pho, I will search high and low for a place that does an amazing beef stock. There used to be this great place near my work in Concord a few years ago that really did a great job. Nothing better than this on a cold day or when you’re feeling a bit snotty and congested. Your recipe looks rather authentic.


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