VIETNAMESE PORK AND NOODLE SOUP (for four)
¼ pound linguine
1-1/2 tablespoons cooking oil
1 pork tenderloin (about ¾ pound) cut into 2 inch strips
6 scallions, including green tops, chopped
1 tablespoon chopped fresh ginger
2 tomatoes, chopped
3 tablespoons Asian fish sauce (nam pla or nouc mam)
1 teaspoon salt
2 cups water
1 quart canned low sodium chicken broth or homemade stock
¼ pound bean sprouts
2 tablespoons lime juice (from about 1 lime) plus lime wedges for serving
1 cucumber, peeled, halved and cut crosswise into thin slices
1 cup mint, basil or cilantro leaves (or a combination) lightly packed
1. In a large pot of boiling, salted water, cook the linguine until just done, about 12 minutes. Drain the pasta. Rinse with cold water and drain thoroughly.
2. Meanwhile, in another large pot, heat the oil over moderate heat. Add the pork, scallions and ginger and cook, stirring occasionally, for 2 minutes.
3. Add the tomatoes, fish sauce, salt, water and broth. Bring to a boil. Reduce the heat and simmer until the pork is just done, about 10 minutes. Stir the cooked linguine, bean sprouts and lime juice into the soup. Ladle into bowls, top each serving with some of the cucumber and herbs, and serve with the lime wedges.
NOTE: If you prefer to substitute more traditional rice noodles, cook them according to package directions (usually bring a pot of water to a boil, immerse the noodles and boil them for 15 seconds, then rinse them in cold tap water and drain them thoroughly).
from Food and Wine Magazine