- 1 kg (2 lbs) of pork neck bones or pork spare ribs cut into 5 cm lengths (2 in)
- 2-3 shallots,
- 2-4 dried shrimp (depends on size)
- 1 tbs of garlic
- 1 tbs of shallots
- 250 gm (1/2 lb) pork belly
- 250 gm (1/2 lb) whole shrimp
- 2 Tbsp annato seeds
- 30 ml (1 oz)Olive Oil
- 3 tbsp of fish sauce
- 1 tbsp paprika
- 1 pkt of pre-made *Mì Quảng noodles
- 1 pkt of wide pho rice noodles
- 2 Tbsp oil
- 1 Tbsp tumeric powder
- bean sprouts
- perilla leaves (tia to)
- mint leaves (rau thom)
- banana blossom**(not essential)
- lime wedges
- cilantro (chopped)
- green scallions (thinly sliced)
- roasted peanuts (coarsely crushed)
- Black sesame rice crackers (in asian markets)
- Blanch and clean the bones by boiling for approx 5 minutes Drain and clean the bones under running water, remove any adhering material from the pot .
- Return the bones to the pot with shallots and dried shrimp. Add water to cover and simmer for about 2 hrs.
- Remove bones and season broth with salt and tsp of sugar. You can leave spareribs in the soup but remove other bones.
- If Mi Quang noodles aren't available bring a medium sized pot of water to boil, add wide pho noodles, after about 3-4 minutes, add oil and tumeric powder, and stir. Add more turmeric if needed for deeper colour. Noodles are done when al dente. Drain and set aside.
- To make annato seed oil, heat 30 ml (1 oz) of olive or vegetable oil in large wok or saute pan and add about 2 Tbsp of annato seeds. As the temperature rises, the red color will seep out of the annato seeds. Strain and discard seeds. Leave this out if there's a known allergy to annatto.It's used purely as a food colourant in this recipe.
- Using prepared oil, saute garlic, shallots, paprika and pork. Half way through, add shrimp as this takes less time to cook. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Set aside, covered.
- Add noodles and the sauteed pork and shrimp to a bowl.
- Pour 1/4-1/2 of the bowl with broth.
- Add bean sprouts, mint, perilla leaves, banana blossom, cilantro, and green scallions.
- Top with toasted peanuts and fragments of black sesame rice crackers .
**Cut banana blossom lengthwise, peel purple leaves and use these. Discard the fruit in between the leaves. Stack and roll leaves together and chiffonade. Immediately place in bowl of water with about 1 tbs of salt to prevent from discoloration.