Chicago is known for its deep-dish pizza, beef brisket, and pho. But where did this Vietnamese noodle soup originate? Chicagoans will tell you it was born in Windy City, but the history of the best pho in Chicago is much more complex. In this blog post, we will explore the origins of pho and how it has become such a beloved dish in Chicago.
Vietnamese noodle soup- Best Pho in Chicago
Pho is a Vietnamese noodle soup that has its origins in the city of Hanoi. The first pho restaurants opened in Chicago in the early 1980s, and today there are dozens of pho shops throughout the city. Pho is a popular dish among Chicagoans and is often considered one of the city’s best foods.
Pho is made from beef or chicken broth, rice noodles, fresh herbs (such as Thai basil or cilantro), and spring onions. The broth can be flavored with star anise, cloves, ginger, and soy sauce. Some add meatballs, shrimp paste, tofu cubes, or sautéed vegetables to their bowls.
The traditional way to eat pho is to pour a mound of white rice into a bowl and top it with steaming hot broth spooned over it. Then customers add toppings they like:
- Thin slices of raw beef or chicken.
- Bean sprouts.
- Lime wedges.
- Julienned green onion.
- Cilantro leaves.
- Crispy fried onions.
- Soft-boiled eggs.
Finally, they dive into the bowlful of fragrant goodness!
A Brief History of Pho
Pho is a Vietnamese noodle soup that originated in the city of Hanoi. While there are many different variations of pho, the most popular version is made with beef and tendon. The origins of Chicago’s best pho can be traced back to 1978 when two brothers, Thomas and Bui Ngoc Thanh, opened their first restaurant called House of Noodle in the Little Vietnam district on Chicago’s west side. Today, House of Noodle is one of the city’s most popular pho restaurants and still makes its original broth recipe from scratch.
The Different Types of Pho
There are many types of pho, but beef pho is the most traditional. Some popular variations include seafood and chicken pho.
Beef pho is made with clear broth, meat, onion, star anise, cloves, and cardamom pods. The broth is simmered for hours until it’s rich and flavorful. Once it’s done simmering, the beef is added and cooked until tender. Flavors are then added to the soup before it’s served up hot.
Seafood pho is made with white fish broth, shrimp, squid ink powder, soy sauce, sugar, and lime juice. The seafood is first sautéed until it’s translucent before being added to the soup. Additional flavors, including green onions and fresh ginger, can be added at this point.
Chicken pho is made with chicken broth, onion, garlic cloves, coriander seeds, cardamom pods, cumin seeds, MSG (monosodium glutamate), and salt. The chicken is first sautéed in oil before being added to the soup. It’s essential to use high-quality chicken when making chicken pho; otherwise, the flavor will not be as strong.
How to Make Pho
Are you looking for a delicious and authentic Vietnamese dish? Pho is the answer! Originating in Hanoi, this soup is made from beef or chicken soup stock, rice noodles, fresh ginger, star anise, cloves, cardamom pods, and other spices. There are many variations of pho worldwide – some include lobster, shrimp, or pork – but all are hearty and flavorful.
To make pho yourself at home, you’ll need some essential ingredients: beef or chicken stock, rice noodles (thin wheat vermicelli), fresh ginger, star anise, cloves, cardamom pods, and other spices. The best way to prepare pho is to start by boiling your noodles in a large pot of water until they’re soft. Drain them and add them to the pot with your stock. Bring everything to a simmer and cook until the noodles are cooked through.
Next, add your sliced ginger and star anise to the soup. Let them steep for about 10 minutes so their flavor can permeate the broth. Finally, add your beef or chicken pieces and let them cook until they’re tender. If you’d like your broth a bit spicier, add some crushed red pepper flakes or Vietnamese chiles. Serve hot with lime wedges on the side for added refreshment!
Chicago is known for its deep-dish pizza, hot dogs, and Chicago-style hot dogs, but it’s pho that genuinely earns the city its reputation. Pho was first introduced to the Windy City by Chinese immigrants, and since then, it has become a staple in the diets of many Chicagoans. Whether you’re a fan of beef or chicken pho, there is a flavor profile that will suit your taste buds. If pho isn’t your thing, don’t worry! There are plenty of other great restaurants in Chicago that offer fantastic food options. So next time you’re in the mood for some delicious Vietnamese cuisine, check out one of Chicago’s popular pho spots!