Banh Canh Noodle Soup

"Some of the best bánh canh (literally means ‘soup noodles’) can be found in my mum’s hometown Phan Thiết, from street stalls run by ladies with years of experience of making and selling just this one dish. In fact, the whole culinary experience in Phan Thiết is phenomenal and I recommend you visit. This amazingly quick, easy and delicious dish is a winner on all days of the year. The flavour of the broth is enhanced by crispy fried shallot oil and lots of fresh lime. You can use any greens and toppings to make this as simple or intricate as you like. I highly recommend spending 20 minutes making the fresh-cut bánh canh noodles. You can even cook the noodles in the broth, making it slightly thicker and comforting."

Vietnamese Vegetarian by Uyen Luu (Hardie Grant, £25), Photography by Laurie Noble.


Additional topping options

  • Vegan Vietnamese Sausage, sliced into 5mm  width discs (optional)
  • Sweet Potato and Water Chestnut Wontons
  • Pan-fried Vegetable Dumplings
  • Asparagus Egg Terrine


  1. Follow the instructions to make homemade bánh canh noodles. If using udon, rehydrate them in a saucepan with boiling water from the kettle, let them sit for 5 minutes then drain and portion into noodle soup bowls.
  2. Pour the water into a saucepan, add the nutritional yeast, stock cube (if required) and vegan fish sauce and simmer over a medium heat with the lid on.
  3. In a separate frying pan (skillet), add the oil and shallot and let it sit on a medium-low heat for about 5 minutes, giving it an occasional stir until they start to turn golden. Divide between the two bowls, pouring the remaining oil into the broth.
  4. Garnish the bowls with dill or coriander (or both), black pepper, additional toppings as you desire and your choice of greens. (If using pak choi, Chinese broccoli leaves or mustard leaves, you need to blanch these first.) Bring the broth to a boil and ladle over the noodles. Serve immediately with lime wedges.
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