BROTH: Prep: 1. Bring a large stockpot with water to boil over high heat. When it comes to a rolling boil, add the beef bones and boil for 10 minutes. 2. In the meantime, toast the spices in a dry frying pan on medium-low heat for about 2-3 minutes. Dump the spices to the empty slow cooker. 3. Heat 1 tablespoon oil over medium-high heat and add the ginger slices and the onion half. Cook until they are browned and softened, about 10-15 minutes. Add the ginger and the onion to the slow cooker. Make: 1. After the bones have been pre-boiled, drain, discard water and rinse bones briefly to clean them. Add the bones to the slow cooker and fill with fresh water to just 1-1/2 inches below surface, add the fish sauce and sugar. 2. Cover and set the slow cooker to cook on low for 8 hours. 3. When the broth is done, taste and season with additional fish sauce if needed. 4. Strain the broth with a fine meshed sieve. Discard the solids. If using immediately keep warm in the slow cooker. PHO - Just before serving... Prep: 1. Place steak in the freezer for 10 minutes (this makes it easier to slice). 2. Meanwhile, bring a pot of water to a boil. 3. Chop cilantro. Cut lime into wedges. 4. Remove steak from freezer and slice very thinly. 5. Warm broth if not using straight from the slow cooker. Make: 1. Cook the rice noodles according to package instructions. Drain. 2. Distribute the noodles, and thin steak slices evenly amongst the bowls and ladle the hot broth into each bowl. (The hot stock should mostly cook the thin steak slices.) Serve with lime wedges, fresh herbs, chili peppers, Hoisin sauce and Sriracha hot chili sauce at the table.
The ratio of bones with and without marrow is important to keep the broth from being too rich and greasy, the more marrow the greasier the broth. If your broth ends up too rich you can add a little water to taste as you warm it.