This will be a lessons-learned post that I can refer to the next time you or I make pho:
- Serious Eats provides a solid foundation for the recipe. Use Wikipedia for a more comprehensive list of the spices to use.
- Pho tastes best on day 3. The longer you simmer the broth, the better (I suggest at least 10 hours).
- Fish sauce loses its sour flavor when it is heated for a long time, so even if it seems you added a lot in the beginning, you'll likely need to add more at the end.
- The starches from the rice noodles dilute the flavor of the broth. When you try the broth on its own, it better feel like a flavor bomb in your mouth. If it is lacking, extra salt, fish sauce, and lime are welcome!
- Brisket is easier to slice thinly after its been cooled in the fridge.
If all this sounds like too much work, a $7 bowl of pho at a Vietnamese restaurant sounds pretty good too. 😬