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Pho Ga for the (Belated) Improv Cooking Challenge

Last month I found a new cooking challenge: Improv Cooking Challenge hosted by Lesa of Edesia's Notebook. The idea - we are assigned two ingredients and are challenged to create a recipe with those two things. March's assigned ingredients: Chicken and Noodles.

Proud mamma alert...and an explanation of why I couldn't get my recipe posted in time!

I had my recipe all picked out, then the month slipped away as I prepped for my friend's birthday dinner party, my son competed in our county science fair, and I was sidelined by the worst allergies I've had in years. So, I bowed out of the posting date with the promise that I would still post and still share all of the great recipes the crew created.

On a sidenote, my son and his science fair partner took first place in their category - Electronics and Electromagnetics - so being stuck there for an entire weekend was well worth it. In fact, their school did incredibly well and nine teams are heading down to southern California in May to compete at the state level.

On to the real reason you're reading this post: the recipe for homemade Pho Ga!


  • 2 organic onions, peeled and quartered
  • three 1/2" lengths of fresh ginger, smashed
  • cold water
  • one 2 to 3 pound organic, free-range chicken
  • 1 T salt
  • 1/4 C fish sauce
  • 1 lb rice noodles (I used fresh ones from Trader Joe's)
  • 1 green garlic, thinly sliced
  • 2 C thinly sliced greens (I used a mixture of mustard greens and kale)
  • 1/2 C torn basil leaves
  • 2 Meyer lemon, cut into wedges (traditionally, you should use lime, but we have a Meyer lemon tree in our yard)
  • 2 jalapeños, thinly sliced (optional)
  • Asian chili-garlic sauce, for serving

Place the chicken, onions, ginger, and salt in a large souppot. Cover everything with water and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to a simmer and simmer for two hours.

Using tongs, transfer the chicken to large bowl and let cool slightly. Pull the meat from the bones. Return the skin and bones to the stockpot and simmer for another hour. Strain the chicken broth and return to the pot. Bring to a boil and let reduce for about 15 minutes. Stir in the fish sauce. Bring to a boil again and add the noodles, green garlic, and greens. Cook for about three minutes.

To serve, place noodles in the bottom of a bowl. Ladle in broth till the noodles are almost covered. Place shredded chicken on top. Garnish with the basil, lemon wedges, jalapeños, and chili-garlic sauce.


  1. Oh yum, Camilla! I was thinking of doing an Asian chicken & rice noodles type dish, but opted for the Med, instead.
    I am pinning this to try when I have Easter week guests!

  2. Looks absolutely divine. I will certainly have to try this one.

  3. I will have to make this for Tingting. She loves Chicken Noodle Soup and I think she would be tickled if I made here an Asian version.


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