Vietnamese Spicy Beef Noodle Soup Recipe (Bún Bò Huế)
The soup is originally from Central Vietnam city, Hue. It’s a popular Vietnamese soup and known for its spicy, salty and little sweet tastes and predominant flavor of lemongrass. Generally, the main ingredients to cook the broth are beef bones, pork hocks, beef flank or beef chuck roast. The dish can be made as spicy as you would like, or it could be made as non-spicy for kids to enjoy. For those that like it really spicy, you can add sautéed chili. You can also use pressure cooker to speed up the cooking without compromising the taste.
For other popular beef soup, you can try this recipe, Vietnamese Beef Noodle Soup Recipe (Phở Bò).
Check out our youtube channel for more short cooking videos, https://www.youtube.com/NPFamilyRecipes.
Vietnamese Spicy Beef Noodle Soup (Bún Bò Huế)
For the Soup
- 3 lbs beef bones
- 1 lb flank steak (or beef chuck roast)
- 1 1/2 lbs pork hocks
- 3 stalks lemongrass
- 1/4 pineapple (optional but recommended)
- 1 yellow onion (peeled)
- 2 tsp salt
- 2 tsp sugar
- 2 tsp shrimp paste (Vietnamese fermented shrimp paste, optional)
For the Sate Chili Sauce
- beef broth
- 3 tsp lemongrass (minced)
- 3 tsp shallots (minced)
- 3 tsp red chili powder (Paprika Powder, see recipe note for picture)
- 2 tsp crushed red pepper flakes (optional)
- 1 tsp sugar
- 1 tsp fish sauce
For the Vegetables
- 1/4 red cabbage (optional)
- 1/4 white cabbage
- 2 lime
- 2 green onions
- 1/4 yellow onion
- bean sprouts
- fresh mint leaves (Asian mints)
For the Soup Bowl
- rice vermicelli
- meat loaf (Vietnamese style, optional)
- Cut lemongrass stalks into 4 inches. Smash, bind them up, and set aside.
- Bring 1 gallon of water to a boil on high heat. Add beef bones, beef chuck roast, and pork hocks. Cook for 8-10 minutes or until all the impurities rise to the top.
- Dump out the whole pot. Wash the meats and bones carefully. Place them in a stock pot. Fill with water until covered (about 1 1/2 gallon). Add lemongrass, pineapple, yellow onion, salt, sugar, and mushroom seasoning. Cover the top and simmer for 1 hour.
Prepare for Other Parts
- Add 1 cup of water in a saucepan. Add fermented shrimp paste. Stir until dissolved. Simmer on high heat. Remove from heat and let it sit from now. (You can skip this step if you don’t like the shrimp paste flavor.)
- Wash the mints and bean sprouts carefully. Cut limes into wedges. Chop green onion finely. Cut cilantro coarsely. Slice yellow onion thinly. Cut white cabbage and purple cabbage thinly. Set aside.
- Cook noodle following the instruction on the package. Rinse and drain well.
- Back to the broth: After an hour, take the lid off. Remove the pork hocks and beef chuck roast. Place them in the icy water. (This will prevent the meat from turning black). Drain well. Discard yellow onion and lemongrass.
- Once again, Cover the top and continue to simmer the broth for a half of hour or more if you have time. Remove the bones. Pour only the clear water in the shrimp paste pot into the broth.
Making the Sate’ Chili Sauce
- Heat a saucepan over medium heat. Add vegetable oil, minced shallot, and minced lemongrass. Stir fry for 2-3 minutes or until fragrant. Add hot chili powder. Continue to stir fry for 3 seconds. Ladle the broth into the mixture. Add sugar and fish sauce. Cook for 2-3 minutes. Remove from heat.
- Pour a half amount of sate’ sauce into the broth pot. The remaining is for garnish.
- Cut Vietnamese meat loaf. Slice the beef chuck roast thinly. Set aside.
- Place noodle into a soup bowl. Arrange beef slices, pork hock,and Vietnamese meat loaf. Garnish with yellow onion slices. Top with green onion and cilantro.
- Ladle the hot broth over the meats and noodles until it is almost full of the bowl. Add vegetables and squeeze the lime juice. Add more chili sate’ sauce if you want more spicy.
- We used this chili powder and crushed chili in this recipe.