Pork Trotter Pho-Ramen Fusion

by Chef Patrick Wagner, CFSA Board Member and Culinary Arts Instructor at Greenville Technical College

Chef Patrick's Pho

I love both Pho and Ramen, but many people don’t have time to go through the extra effort to make ramen noodles from scratch. I wanted to create a dish that would reflect the heartiness of some of my favorite ramen dishes, but still be quick, flexible, and flavorful. The recipe is very flexible for the addition of any of the seasonal products, but I wanted to focus on a undervalued cut, and the dish can incorporate tons of vegetables, it is very rich, but it has virtually no fat.

The broth can be cooked in a crockpot, and it would only take a few minutes to pull together the remaining ingredients for a healthy dinner. Please play with the garnish, greens, and proteins that you add to the dish!

The Russian Kale and Pork Trotters were sourced from Greenbrier Farms, the chicken eggs and green garlic were sourced from my yard.

 


Broth Ingredients:

Ginger             1 finger about 3 inches long

Onions                                     2 ea.

Thai Chili                                1 ea.

Star Anise                               3-4 ea.

Cloves                                     3 ea.

Black Peppercorns                  ½ tsp.

Pork Trotters                           6-8 lbs.

Fish Sauce                               1 oz.

Soy Sauce                               1 oz.

Sugar                                       1 oz.

Water                                      1 gal.

Salt                                          ½ Tbsp.

 

Miso                                        1 Tbsp.

Soy Milk                                 2-4 cups.

 

Pho Ingredients:

Thin Rice Noodles                  1 lb.

Hot Water                               1 qt.

Additional Protein                  as desired.

Russian Kale or other greens  1-2 lbs.

 

Garnish:

Green Garlic                            4 each

Thai Basil                                1 bunch

Cilantro                                   ½ bunch

Limes, wedged                       2 ea.

Thai Chilies, minced               2 oz.

Soy Eggs                                 8 each

 


 

Procedure:

  1. Place the pork trotters in a stockpot large enough to hold them. Cover them with water and bring to a boil. Once the water has come to a boil, turn the heat off and remove the meat from the pot; discard the liquid. (This is referred to as blanching the bones)
  2. While the trotters are heating up, char the onion, ginger, and Thai chili until blackened on their surfaces. This can be done over an open flame or under a broiler.
  3. Once all of the onion, ginger, and chili have been blackened, peel off the outer skin (that has been charred) and discard: chop the remaining sections into pieces
  4. In a small pan, toast the star anise, cloves, and peppercorns over a medium-low heat until they become aromatic. Be careful not to burn them!
  5. Place the trotters, toasted spices, fire-roasted onion, chili, ginger, fish sauce, sugar, soy sauce, salt, and water in a stockpot, and bring to a simmer over a medium-high flame.
  6. Once the mixture reaches a simmer, skim the film developing on the surface and turn the heat to a gentle simmer.
  7. After the broth has gently simmered for 3 hours, and remove the trotters
  8. Strain out the soup broth and keep it hot
  9. Once the trotters have cooled, pick the meat from the trotters.
  10. Place the dried rice noodles in a container with 2 quarts of hot water to hydrate.
  11. Whisk the soy milk and miso into the soup base.
  12. Adjust the flavor as desired with additional soy sauce or miso.
  13. To serve, place a small pile of the hydrated rice noodles in a bowl, along with a couple slices of chucks of pork, and top with heap of Russian Kale or other winter greens.
  14. Serve the garnishes at the table, to be added to the soup by the diner’s discretion.

 

Suggested variations:

  • Omit the soy and Miso for a traditional flavored Pho broth
  • Add additional garnishes that suit your pantry and whim. Any thin cut root vegetables can be quickly blanched in the broth to get the cooked.

 

Chef Patrick Wagner has spent 24 years in the culinary arts field, working as pastry chef, executive chef, roundsman chef, and cook. He is a chef instructor with Greenville Tech’s Culinary Institute of the Carolinas, specializing in ethnic cuisine. Check out his cooking demos on his YouTube Channel.

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