2 onions halved

2 nubs of ginger (about 10 cm) halved lengthwise

2kg (about 5 ponds) good beef bones

mix of spices: 1 cinnamon stick, 1tbsp coriander seeds, 1 tbs fennel seeds, 5 whole star anise, 1 cardamon pod - in mesh bag


fish sauce

little bit of sugar

rice noodles

1/2 pound flank, sirloin or eye round, sliced thinly as possible

big handful of mint, cilantro, basil

2-3 chili peppers, sliced

2 limes cut into wedges

2 big handfuls of fresh bean sprouts

hoisin sauce



  • char: place ginger and onions on baking sheet, brush with olive oil and broil on high until begin to char, about 10-15 min
  • parboil the bones: bring water in a large pot to boil, then add bones and boil on high heat for about 10 min, drain, rinse the bones, then refill the pot with water and add once again the bones, bring to boil, then let simmer and remove any scum that rises on top
  • boil broth: add ginger, onion, mesh bag filled with spices, sugar, fish sauce, salt and let it simmer for about 2 1/2 hours, strain broth and adjust seasoning (add more fish sauce, sugar if needed)
  • meat and noodles: slice your beef as thinly as possible ( freezing it for 15 min prior to slicing helps a lot), cook noodles as directed on the package
  • serving: fill each bowl with noodles, raw meat slices, bring your broth back to boil, then ladle each bowl with hot broth, garnish with bean sprouts, mint, cilantro, basil ,chili, hoisin and strata to your liking