Come see us at La Cocina’s Night Market this Friday night

We’re thrilled to be part of La Cocina’s first ever Night Market at the Alemany Farmers’ Market this Friday night, August 17 from 6-9pm. Especially happy to be making food along side with our fav local all stars - Locanda, 4505, and Sabores del Sur. 

Starting out as a pop-up, we understand the challenges of finding affordable kitchen spaces and resources to bring your recipes to life. We’re proud to be able to give back.

We’ll be serving our signature Crab and Tomato Noodle soup (aka Bun Rieu) at stall #59. All profits will be donated to La Cocina.

Where:
Alemany Farmer’s Market
100 Alemany Blvd, Bernal Heights, San Francisco

When:
Friday, August 17 from 6-9PM at stall #59

[DISCOUNT] Tablehopper has a discount code (only $20 instead of $25). Use the promo code: tablehopper

»»» Buy your tickets now »»»

Bun Cuon Thursday

aka Vietnamese Rice Crepes. Steamed rice noodle filled with ground pork, minced wood ear mushroom, and onions, topped with fried shallots, cilantro, and our favorite fancy pork.

The entire process is so involved that we’re only able to make it happen once a week.

…some of the best banh cuon  we’ve tasted in this country
- Tasting Table

Get some every Thursday!

Hi FiDi!

Noodle soup pop-up is coming to Dädä (2nd and Mission) on Friday, 3/30. Save your Friday lunch plans for us! Starts at 11:30am.

Find us at Dädä for lunch every Wednesdays and Fridays from 11:30am-2pm.

Lunch Menu at Dädä for Friday, March 30:

Crab and Tomato Noodle Soup (Bún Riêu) - 10

Crab and Tomato Noodle Soup topped with crab omelette, housemade pork meatballs, curled water spinach, tomatoes, fresh herbs, and silky rice noodles

Beef Pho - 10

Beef noodle soup topped with braised beef brisket, sliced beef, beef meatballs, onions, fresh herbs, and fresh rice noodles

Bánh Cuốn - 4

Vietnamese steamed rice noodle filled with ground pork, minced wood ear mushroom, and onions, topped with fried shallots

See full pop-up schedule >

Come hungry, leave happy! 

Today’s Lunch: debut of Wonton Noodle Soup, Soup Junkie style @TheWindowSf, 11-2pm

The making of wonton noodle soup is the most labor intensive out of all my soups. Our wonton noodle soup is different from the Hong Kong style version where you see 6-8 wontons, bok choy, and green onions floating over egg noodles. The recipe is inspired by “Chiuchow” (north-easternmost of Canton China) side of my family.

Broth: Savory, flavorful, chicken broth with hints of seafood umami

Toppings include: pork & shrimp wontons, braised pork slices, shredded chicken, chives, green onions, and pork cracklings - ohhhh yes I did…

Come taste this yourself today @TheWindowSF (1599 Howard @ 12th) from 11am-2pm. 

Soup Junkie Serves Lunch at The Window Today

We’re excited to be part of the The Window (1599 Howard Street @ 12th) pop-up lineup! Starting today, we’ll be serving lunch from 11am-2pm.

Check out our new take-away gear (photo filled with bun rieu goodies). Just add soup and get your slurp action on!

We’re also stoked about debuting Bánh Cuốn, Vietnamese steamed rice roll filled with pork, minced wood ear mushrooms and onions. Eat as a starter, in between soup or save for later!

Lunch Menu @ The Window:

Bún Riêu - 10
Crab and Tomato Noodle Soup topped with crab omelette, housemade pork meatballs, curled water spinach, tomatoes, fresh herbs, and silky rice noodles

Beef Pho - 10
Beef noodle soup topped with braised beef brisket, sliced beef, beef meatballs, onions, fresh herbs, and fresh rice noodles

Bánh Cuốn - 4
Vietnamese steamed rice noodle filled with ground pork, minced wood ear mushroom, and onions, topped with fried shallots (3 per order)

See full menu here

Hope you to see your hungry faces today!

Pho-sure Good

BFF’s boyfriend: Why is Soup Junkie making Pho since there are so many Vietnamese restaurants in the city serving good and less expensive pho?

Soup Junkie: I can’t find good pho soup in the city where you feel good drinking without suffering from MSG-hangover, rare beef slices are juicy and flavorful, and briskets melts…

Our pho is different from the typical rare beef slices on top of rice noodles. My mom’s recipe is pretty solid with rich beef essence from simmering beef bones filled with marrow and other spices for over 7 hours. This way, we’re able to extract all the natural flavors without relying on MSG. Beef Brisket is slow braised. Rare beef slices are hand-cut to ensure the texture is juicer and not easily overcooked in the broth.

The complexity of the flavors is layered with the Southern Vietnamese style of fragrant herbs: basil, green onion, cilantro, and lime juice. Topping it with crisp bean sprouts gives it a crunchy texture marrying with chewy rice noodles. If you prefer a kick, then throw in a dash of my homemade hot sauce to add some heat to a cool SF night.

I grew up making pho with my mom since I was thirteen. At that time, I despised all those hours long of prep work. Now, I am glad and thankful to have lots of practice making pho.

Come down to The Window (Howard and 12th), starting March 19 from 11pm-2pm to warm your tummy with a bowl of tasty pho. You may have a hard time deciding which noodle soup to slurp up… Bun Rieu or Pho? Bring a friend so you’ll have an option to try both! Pho-sure good!

Kudos from one of our Pho Junkie:

J’adore Jidori eggs

J’adore Jidori eggs from the first moment I sunk my teeth in them in Tokyo. This type of free-range chicken is common in Japan and the eggs can be found here in the bay area at our local Japanese market. The bright orange custardy yolk and soft tender whites are superior compared to your run-of-the mill eggs. Jidori eggs embodies richer flavor profile and you can taste the creaminess on your tongue. For due diligence, I conducted a small blind taste challenge between Jidori and regular eggs. The verdict? Jidori wins!

While myriads methods of cooking eggs exist, I will be featuring soft boiled Jidori eggs in my 10-hour pork-based ramen soup at my next pop-up (Feb. 17 from 6-10p) at Vinyl Wine Bar. The question you are wondering now is, is this egg cracked up as I claim it to be? Find out by first hand consumption! 

Hope to see you tonight (2/17) and bon appetite!

Read more about ramen

Bun Rieu at Vinyl

Bun Rieu Menu

The day of my very first pop up. I didn’t know what to expect and I was worried that no one would show up. The word was out on all the bay area food blogs and columns. I am forever grateful to The Bold Italic, Tablehopper, SFeater, 7x7, Rice Paper Scissors, and everyone for helping me get the word out and for their support.

Originally we were going to do 40 bowls, but I decided to make an extra small pot in case more people decide to show up. To my surprise we sold out in 45 minutes at 70 bowls and I felt really bad we had to turn away a bunch of people. I felt a great accomplishment that night and was so happy with all the great feedback. I’ve learned a lot that night and couldn’t have did it without the help of my girlfriend and friends in the kitchen. It feels so good to work so hard at something you love and have the outcome be better then I’ve imagine.

See More PHOTOS

"Soup Junkie’s Bun Rieu Is All it’s Cracked Up to Be at Vinyl Wine Bar Pop-up"

Hungry for Bun Rieu

What is Bun Rieu?

Bun Rieu is one of my favorite Vietnamese noodle soups. Bun Rieu is a Vietnamese crab and tomato based noodle soup comprised of crab, eggs, tomatoes, and veggies. There are many different recipes on how to make Bun Rieu and every family has their own secret recipe. Perhaps I’m bias but I think my mom makes one of the best Bun Rieu. She has passed on her secret recipes to me and I’ve been making this dish with her since I was in fifteen.

Why Soup Junkie’s Bun Rieu?

Bun Rieu is the first thing I order every time I see it on a restaurant menu. But it often tastes watery and flavorless. I have not yet found a restaurant in the Bay Area that makes Bun Rieu similar to my mom’s savory and flavorful version. Why? I suspect one of the reasons is the cost and amount of ingredients required to recreate a bowl of bun rieu. No one would be willing to pay $20 for a bowl of noodle soup right? So the challenge for me is to keep the cost reasonable and at the same time not compromise anything on the recipe.

Crab is one of the main ingredients and I only use fresh crab for the omelets and for the broth. I get live crabs, then cook and crack them myself. The broth alone takes about 6 hours to complete. For the meatballs, I get fresh pork and grind them myself. This is the only way I can get the meatballs at the texture I’m looking for.

Hungry For Bun Rieu?

We’re kicking off our inaugural Bun Rieu pop-up at:

Vinyl Wine Bar

359 Divisadero St (Corner of Divisadero and Oak - Directions)

Date: Friday, January 27

Time: 6pm till pot’s empty

$11 per bowl (limited quantity)

Other Soups

Besides Bun Rieu, I also specialize in making these noodle soups:

Pho | Wonton Noodle Soup | Tonkotsu ramen | Burnt Miso Ramen

Follow @SoupJunkieSF to know which pot of soup is brewing next and pop-up location:

Burnt Miso Ramen

On my quest to make the perfect Ramen. I decided to make a Miso Ramen instead of my usual Tonkotsu version. I remember having the best Miso Ramen in Japan which had a awesome burnt smoky flavor in the broth. I’ve been brainstorming long and hard to figure out how they got this flavor and how to achieve the flavors of this broth. Over the weekend I invited a small group of friends over for a taste test. Everyone at the table was quiet and all you can hear is slurping. We totally ignored each other and concentrated on the Ramen. The bowl of Ramen was so good and it brought me back to the time when I was having this burnt Miso Ramen in Japan.

Fresh ramen noodles, 12 hours sous vide pork belly, Japanese Jidori eggs, green onions, fried garlic, and corn

Bun Rieu for Tablehopper

UPDATE: Tablehopper mentioned us!! Thanks Marcia. Read this week’s Tablehopper.

What an honor to host a Bun Rieu dinner for Marcia from Tablehopper and Violet Blue.

I spent 6 satisfying hours in the kitchen making this perfect bowl of broth. I’m unsure why I can’t find a bowl of Bun Rieu that quite hits the spot in San Francisco. Most Bun Rieu in the city are watery and flavorless. Since I can’t find it anywhere else…might as well make it! This recipe is adopted from my mom with a few additions of my own.

Highlights of the night: Bun Rieu noodle soup, eggnog ice cream, Christopher Elbow chocolates, and sake. Iron Goddess tea (gong fu style tea service) paired with delicious coffee crunch cake from our in house pastry chef Kat Li. Fabulous wines from Mark Bright of Saison. Thanks for making this dinner party extra special!

Further Reading: "Hung Up on Bun Rieu"

PHO - Vietnamese beef noodle soup

Pho is pound for pound one of the best noodle soups in the world. It’s perfect for a cold night, the unofficial hangover cure, and one of the most famous Vietnamese dishes. Even though the broth is made with beef bones and roasted spices, the broth should be a very light obscure brown but still clear. Mom’s recipe is packed full of beef flavor and not overpowering. It’s a perfect balance with all the spices and textures.

Pot of stock

Beef Brisket

The accoutrements

Ready to eat

I recently returned from a 16 day Eat Asia tour. Our first stop was Hong Kong and we  experienced one of the most memorable bowl of wonton noodles. Mak’s Noodle in Central district. This is the original Mak’s and I think is still the best one out of all the Maks in HK. Noodles are springy and al dente, made with duck eggs. Broth is clean with hints seafood umami. Highly recommend this place if you ever take a trip to Hong Kong! You won’t regret it!

I recently returned from a 16 day Eat Asia tour. Our first stop was Hong Kong and we  experienced one of the most memorable bowl of wonton noodles. Mak’s Noodle in Central district. This is the original Mak’s and I think is still the best one out of all the Maks in HK. Noodles are springy and al dente, made with duck eggs. Broth is clean with hints seafood umami. Highly recommend this place if you ever take a trip to Hong Kong! You won’t regret it!

Wonton Noodle Soup

Every time I order Wonton Noodle soup at a restaurant, I leave feeling unsatisfied. Growing up, I’ve always had out of this world Wonton Noodle soup by mom. Why is it so hard to find an awesome bowl of wonton noodle soup in the Bay Area? Hopefully, I can put the spotlight back on this delicious dish when people try my version.

There are two version of this soup. The Hong Kong style, where you only get soup, noodles, and wontons. Then there is the Canton style soup, this is the version I grew up loving, and this is the version I’m trying to perfect.

The Broth: Savory, flavorful, chicken broth with hints of seafood, Umami

Wontons: Pork and shrimp stuffing

The Rest: Fresh noodles, shredded chicken, braised pork slices, chives, green onions, and pork cracklings - ohhhh yes I did…

Bun Rieu for The Bold Italic

Annie, Kat, and I were lucky enough to have Sarah Han from The Bold Italic over to try my noodle soup over the weekend. Accompanying Sarah were Phillip Maisel, Justine Sharrock, and N.W. Smith. I didn’t know what to expect but was confident they would enjoy my noodle soup. I wanted the experience to feel like they where going over a good friends house for dinner. Sarah, Phillip, Justine, and N.W were very nice and so fun to hang out with. It did not feel like I just met them today.

Sarah generously posted a blog about their experiences that night. You can read the complete write up on the link below.

http://thebolditalic.com/blog_posts/1287-hung-up-on-bun-rieu