Can't Stand the Heat: Beef Pho

I’m leaving California. That’s right. I’m replacing my dear old home for my other home: México. I'm leave for Guadalajara, México and I couldn’t be more excited. Most of you are probably wondering where that is.

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There it is!

Ahh México. Nothing but good memories. Family, great food, good weather and awesome friends. I LOVE it there. But enough of that, you’ll hear more about México soon enough. For now, I want to focus on the place I’m leaving. It’s always rough leaving home, and it’s even harder to leave when you think of the food you’re leaving behind.

We actually just got back from the US Open of Surfing 2013 at Huntington Beach. It’s one of the largest events of the summer in Southern California and simply put, it’s awesome. It’s a weeklong surfing and skating competition and includes two days of free concerts open to the public. And if there’s anywhere you want to stop and eat in Huntington, it’s Little Saigon. It’s the largest Vietnamese-American enclave in the country and is one of the best places you can go for authentic Vietnamese food.

Little Saigon is known for its Beef Pho. It’s what I most miss from California when I leave, so this is why I’m sharing this with you. It involves more than a few ingredients but it’s definitely worth a try.


1 large onion

1 knob of peeled ginger

1 stick of lemongrass

1 small red chilli

2 oz. sesame oil

2 star anise

1 cinnamon stick

2 beef steaks (150g each)

3 cups of beef stock

1 handful of beansprouts

2 handfuls of rice noodles

1 handful of chopped spring onions

4 sprigs of chopped mint

Chopped basil

Small bunch of chopped coriander

Step 1:

Slice the onions into rings and grate the ginger. Dice the lemongrass and chili. Put them in a pan together with the star anise, cinnamon, onions with a shot of oil and cook for about 2 minutes.

Step 2:

Slice the beef into very very thin strips and add it to the pan to cook. Then add the beef stock and put the heat on medium. Add noodles to cook for about 3 minutes. When that’s done, add the beansprouts on top with the spring onions.

Step 3:

There are a lot of toppings you can add to Pho and it really just depends on personal preference. I like adding sriracha hot sauce and a lemon wedge. But feel free to add Thai basil, cilantro or more bean sprouts!

Pho is fresh, healthy and literally always delicious. After our day at the beach, it was just what we wanted, especially when that ocean breeze picked up.