If only people would read and read well, they would know how useless it is to ask me to e-mail them recipes. If only people would read and read well, they would stop asking where the recipes are since the pagination links are very plain to see. I’m taking my advice too. If only I read and read well, I wouldn’t have messed up all the dishes with hogan noodles that I have cooked in the past. Hofan noodles are not cooked. They are soaked in cold water for about half an hour, placed in a bowl, and boiling broth is poured over them. Although I have an explanation for past mistakes no instructions in English on the hofan packages that excuse won’t work with the latest pack of hofan noodles I bought. I read them and read them carefully and the result was a spectacular lunch.
This beef and hofan dish was inspired by the Vietnamese Pho although the broth is nothing like the traditional broth used for Pho. I was able to buy a tray of liquid (beef ligaments) from Unimart and I simmered them in a casserole with lots of pork bones. Simmered them for over six hours because that was how long it took to make the liquid very tender. The broth was wickedly wonderful and I mean wickedly wonderful. It was thick because some of the liquid has melted into the liquid giving it a sticky and gelatinous texture.
There is no actual cooking involved in making this fan noodle soup. It’s the broth that’s cooked and the rest is just a matter of assembly. If your heart condition cannot tolerate the liquid, omit it from the broth and the dish. The following recipe assumes that you have already cooked the broth.
Soak the hofan noodles in cold water for about 30 minutes. Drain. Place the noodles in a large bowl. Peel the carrot. Using a vegetable peeler, peel the carrot itself so that you have thin strips that will cook in the hot broth in a matter of seconds. Cut the onion leaves (or garlic leaves or leeks) into thin rings. Cut the beef into small pieces, about two inches by two inches.
Cut the liquid into bite-size pieces. Arrange the carrot strips, greens, uncooked beef, and cooked liquid on top of the noodles. Pour boiling broth into the bowl. Sprinkle some toasted garlic bits on top and serve at once. Now, this is important. The broth has to be boiled. The broth was still simmering on the stove when I assembled my hofan noodle dish and I used a ladle to pour some into my bowl. The less hot broth will not cook the beef nor soften the noodles.