It’s been a while since my last post, so I thought I’d pop back on for a quick post about another one of my favorite noodle soups. Pho. Ahhh with the cold weather we’ve been having lately, I would slurp up a bowl of pho everyday if I could. My favorite spot for this deliciously warming dish is Pho Van in Catonsville, MD by the Office Depot on Rt.40. I find their rice noodles are the perfect texture, cooked just to a chewy bite. I hate when I order pho at some places and the noodles are overcooked and too soft. The pho broth is aromatic and served piping hot! Just how I like it. Pho Van has really good lemongrass meats as well – the lemongrass pork is a favorite.
When I worked nearby, Kevin and I would make Pho Van part of our weekly routine – Pho Thursdays. Kind of like Taco Tuesdays, but no one else knew about it HAHA. The owner stopped giving us menus ages ago – Small Pho #12 (all the lean meats, no gelatiny jiggly bits and tripe) and fried spring rolls for Kevin. Large Pho #1 (everything, gelatiny jiggly bits and all, the stranger the texture the better) or Pho #17 (pho ga or chicken pho) and a bowl of sliced onions for me. The owner even remembers Kevin gets a can of coke. Every time we finish ordering our food he points to Kevin and says ‘a can coke?’ 😉 When we go with my brother and sis-in-law, we order a pho each and a lemongrass meat plate to share. I love when we go for a family pho date!
Oh look! It’s snowing outside and I’m pretty sure pho is calling my name 😉
Fresh Roll. I’ve always called these rolls ‘Summer Rolls,’ but at Pho Van the server calls them ‘Fresh Rolls.’ Inside each rice wrap are some vermicelli noodles, thinly shredded lettuce and 3 shrimp. I like fresh summer rolls from An Loi better because they have slices of pork inside as well as the shrimp, lettuce and noodles, but they are still lovely, light and ‘summery’ here.
Fried Spring Rolls. Filled with meat and veggies and fried nice and crispy.
Sprouts, Thai Basil, Sliced Jalapeño Peppers, and Lime. I add everything into my soup and I ask for cilantro as well. The hot broth lightly blanches the sprouts and the basil, peppers and lime infuse the broth with lovely aromatics, some heat and citrusy tang.
Lemongrass Chicken and Pork on rice. SO GOOD!
There are loads of pho restaurants around now, but most of are just ok with mediocre broth. If you want a really satisfying bowl of pho with good broth I highly recommend Pho Van in Catonsville, MD. Some things to note, it’s a CASH ONLY business and they charge I think 50 cents per item for carry-out orders. Give it a go and let me know what you think in the comment section below.
Pike Park Plaza South Shopping Center
6477 Baltimore National Pike
Catonsville, MD 21228
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