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The broth is the star of this show, transporting you straight to Thailand — best to share the adventure with loved ones for a fun, hands-on dinner where everyone builds their own bowl!

You will need

Serves 4

  • 400–500 g dried flat rice noodles
  • 1 teaspoon sesame oil
  • 4 cups mixed vegetables, such as broccoli and cauliflower florets, peeled sliced carrots, trimmed green beans and shredded wombok cabbage
  • Soy sauce, hoisin sauce and sriracha chilli sauce, to serve

Lemongrass Broth

  • 2 onions, unpeeled and quartered
  • 5 cm piece fresh ginger, roughly chopped
  • 2 cinnamon sticks
  • 6 star anise (or less if you don't like a strong licorice flavour)
  • 1 teaspoon whole coriander seeds
  • 2 tablespoons rice bran oil
  • 1 tablespoon sesame oil
  • 4 garlic cloves, unpeeled and crushed
  • 2 lemongrass stems, smashed, roughly chopped
  • 2 teaspoons whole black peppercorns
  • 2 celery stalks with leaves, roughly chopped
  • 2 carrots, peeled, roughly chopped
  • 1–3 tablespoons soy sauce or tamari
  • 1–2 tablespoons hoisin sauce
  • 2 teaspoons palm sugar
  • 2 litres vegetable stock
  • 8–12 fresh kaffir lime leaves, roughly torn
  • 1 tablespoon lemon or lime juice

To Garnish

  • 1 batch Ginger and sesame tofu, cooked
  • 1 red onion, halved and finely sliced
  • 4 spring onions, finely sliced
  • 2 cups bean sprouts, rinsed
  • 2 cups picked herbs, such as coriander, Vietnamese mint and Thai basil
  • Fried Asian shallots*, for sprinkling

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20 mins to prep

30 mins to cook

  1. Step 1

    To make the broth, heat a large, heavy stockpot over medium-high heat. Add the onions and ginger to the dry pan and allow them to catch and caramelise slightly; this should take about 1 minute. Remove from the pan and set aside. In the same hot pan, dry fry the cinnamon sticks, star anise and coriander seeds for 30 seconds, or until roastily aromatic. Add the rice bran and sesame oils, then quickly stir in the onions and ginger again, along with the garlic cloves, lemongrass, peppercorns, celery and carrots. Stir constantly for 1 minute, before adding the soy sauce, hoisin, sugar and stock. Add most of the kaffir lime leaves, setting some bits aside. Bring to boil, then reduce heat, cover and simmer for 10–15 minutes.

  2. Step 2

    Strain the soup through a fine colander, then return the liquid to the pan. Very finely shred the reserved kaffir lime leaf and add to the broth. Add the lemon or lime juice, then keep hot until ready to serve.

  3. Step 3

    Prepare the noodles according to the packet instructions, then rinse with cold water, toss with the sesame oil, and set aside in a covered bowl until ready to serve.

  4. Step 4

    Steam or microwave your chosen vegetables until just tender (wombok cabbage can be left raw). Blanch in cold water, then arrange on a platter. Arrange the garnish ingredients on the platter. Have the fried shallots, soy sauce, hoisin and sriracha and plenty of serviettes close at hand.

  5. Step 5

    Bring the hot stockpot to the table and place on a wooden board. Divide the noodles evenly between four large, warmed bowls and allow people to add their chosen veggies before ladling in the piping-hot stock. Invite everyone to garnish and season their own bowls as desired.

Hot tip!

*Fried Asian shallots can be found in the international foods section of most supermarkets. They add a delicious, oniony crunch sprinkled on stir-fries, curries and soups.

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