Bun Bo Hue is a world renowned dish from Central Vietnam. This Vietnamese Spicy Noodle Soup is distinctive from another Vietnamese noodle soup called Pho. Bun Bo Hue has more ingredients and prepared longer than pho, making it more flavorful and aromatic. It is by far the most difficult to replicate dish from Hue but with practice makes perfect. So here’s the Bun Bo Hue Recipe: Vietnamese Spicy Noodle Soup you can try at home.
For the Bun Bo Hue broth
6 lbs beef bones
2 lbs boneless beef shank
1/3 pineapple, peeled and cut into large chunks
12 stalks fresh lemongrass, trimmed off the upper halves and bruised the stalks then tie up in a bunch
1 large yellow onion, skin peeled
1 large piece fresh ginger (palm size), sliced in half length wise
4 tsp salt
1 one-inch knob of rock sugar or 2 Tbsp sugar
1. Place the beef bones and shank on a pot. Boil for 10 minutes to remove impurities/residue.
2. Remove the beef bones and shank from the pot and wash them. While you are at it, wash the pot as well to make sure there is no unwanted grease left from it.
3. Put back the washed beef bones and shank to the now cleaned pot. Add salt, lemongrass, ginger, salt and sugar.
4. Pour boiling water on the pot.
5. Add pineapple chunks to add flavor and makes the meat tender.
6. Drop one whole onion and boil it for 3-4 hours.
For the Meatballs
1 loaf Vietnamese uncooked processed ham/sausage
1 tsp black pepper
1/4 lb ground pork
3 cloves garlic, chopped (approximately 1 tsp)
1 Tbsp chopped shallot
2 green onions chopped
1 tsp red paprika powder or dry bun bo hue seasoning*
1/2 tsp sugar
2 Tbsp fish sauce
2 tsp baking powder
1. Place all the ingredients in big bowl and mix them well.
2. Let it sit for an hour. (Chill if you must so it will be easier to mold them into balls later)
For the Sate
4 Tbsp cooking oil
5 cloves garlic, finely chopped (approximately 2 tsp)
3 Tbsp finely chopped lemongrass
1/4 cup shallots, sliced
1 Tbsp fish sauce
1 Tbsp crushed red peppers (optional)
2 Tbsp red paprika powder or dry bun bo hue seasoning*
1. Put oil in the pan. Make sure to use medium heat.
2. Put slice shallots first and cook it for few seconds before adding the chopped garlic, lemongrass and red peppers.
3. Wait til they are cooked (brown) and add fish sauce and paprika powder.
4. Stir continuously until it gets thick. Set aside
For the Broth Seasoning
6 Tbsp fish sauce
3 Tbsp Bun bo hue seasoning
1 Tbsp fine shrimp paste, optional
1. Remove the beef shank, pineapple and onion from the pot. Slice the beef shank thinly and set aside.
2. Put the meatballs on the pot.
3. Add the sate. (You can set aside a part of it for garnishing)
4. Season the broth with fish sauce and bun bo hue seasoning. You may add shrimp paste for stronger flavor, authentic Bun Bo Hue uses shrimp paste instead of fish sauce. Dilute the paste in cold water first before adding it on the broth to remove the strong smell.
For the Garnishes
Yellow onions, thinly sliced
Banana blossom, thinly sliced
Thick Rice Vermicelli Noodles (cook 30-45 minutes prior to serving)
Assemble Bun Bo Hue
1. Place the now cold vermicelli noodles on a bowl.
2. Put the thinly sliced beef shank, beef bones and meatballs.
3. Pour some of the broth
4. Add the garnishes on the top. You can add sate as well if you like it to be spicier.