I hope it's true what they say..."better late than never." It's been a crazy week, but I got my first Daring Cook's Challenge made and even remembered to take a few pictures. I'm still learning the new camera, though, so they didn't all turn out...but you'll have a few to make your mouth water!
So, October's challenge was Pho (pronounced fu, with a soft u). I was nervous from the get-go. Scott doesn't enjoy anything Asian except the occasional bagged stir fry with soy sauce on the rice. I know...he's quite adventurous, isn't he?! The kids barely eat anything I make anymore. They still love to help me in the kitchen, but they don't hardly eat what they make either! The other issue? Pho is a soup. Scott is not a soup guy. He likes to say that he doesn't like hot liquids. I love soup, though, so even though I was nervous...I was also excited!
There were some choices to be made this month. Pho can be made with chicken, pork, seafood, beef or vegetarian. I chose beef. There's also a long and a short version. I made the short version, purchasing my beef stock from the store rather than making it. Here is the recipe for the long version. Other than not making my own stock, I pretty much followed it.
So, what do you think? I thought it not only smelled fantastic, looked delicious, but tasted incredible. As my husband is not a fan of Asian flavors I don't get them very often and I just have to say, "Man! I'm missing out!"
This recipe wasn't difficult. The hardest part was finding the whole spices, and shelling out the cash! I recommend giving this a shot, though...yum!
Now, if you ask my husband and kids, you'll get a very different opinion on the success of this challenge. Tyler liked the noodles but nothing else. Jace and Gracie ate nothing but the salad I served with it. Scott, didn't even eat that!
I thoughtfully made Scott a variation, knowing his aversion to hot liquids. I pulled the flank steak out and thickened a bit of the broth to make a nice sauce.
In the end, this recipe will not be one I turn to again anytime soon. But, if the occasion arrises that I'm cooking for others, I might just pull it out. Like I said, I did enjoy it.
There was another part of the challenge too. Dessert wontons. We got to pick the filling and I chose marshmallow fluff, peanut butter, and chocolate. That part was great. However, I couldn't find wonton wrappers. Obviously I was looking someplace they weren't and I might ask next time I'm in the store. (Weight Watchers has a whole article on wonton recipes this week.) For this I tried Lumpia wrappers, thinking, "How different could they be?" As it turns out, very different and not so good!
All in all, my first go round as a daring cook wasn't exactly great, but I shall not be deterred...I'll be back next month for more. You can count on it...and I'll try to be on time too.