Vietnamese Chicken Noodle Soup (Pho Ga)


Vietnamese Chicken Noodle Soup (Pho Ga)
Vietnamese Chicken Noodle Soup (Pho Ga)

Pho Ga (Vietnamese Chicken Noodle Soup) is the quick poultry alternative to its more well-known and beloved cousin, Pho Bo (Vietnamese Beef Noodle Soup). Pho consists of rice noodles in a hearty and aromatic broth made from either beef or chicken stock, topped with meat and garnished with fresh herbs.

Pho originated in Northern Vietnam and quickly became popular across Vietnam. There are lots of variations in Pho as you travel from Hanoi in Northern Vietnam down to Ho Chi Minh City in Southern Vietnam.

Vietnamese Chicken Noodle Soup (Pho Ga)

Vietnamese Chicken Noodle Soup (Pho Ga)

Pho is pronounced as “Fuh” and it can be eaten any time of day. However, it is one of the most popular breakfast items. The broth in Pho ga is much lighter and less intense than Pho Bo. Because of this, Pho Ga is also eaten not when one is under the weather, much like all versions of chicken noodle soup from around the world.

The most authentic way to make Pho Ga is to use free-range chickens. Free-range chickens are a lot pricier than farm-raised chickens. Where I live, they cost two to three times more than the abundantly available Foster Farms chicken. However, I prefer free-range chicken because they are much more flavorful, likely due to their natural diet. If you don’t have access to free-range chicken, regular chicken is just fine too.

Like other Vietnamese noodle soup dishes, you must clean the chicken thoroughly before making the stock. I like to give my chicken a thorough rub down with salt. The abrasive scrubbing with salt not only cleans away that yucky film on the chicken and gives it a nice shine, but it also eliminates any of the foul poultry smell. Some people don’t believe in washing poultry so to each their own.

By Vicky

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