Vietnamese Recipes – Tapioca Noodle Crab Soup or Thick Noodle Crab Soup (Southern Cuisine) – Banh Canh Cua Cha Ca (Mon An Mien Nam)
1/ Add rice flour, vegetable oil, salt and a cup of water into a bowl to dissolve them completely. Then microwave for 2-3 minutes until the mixture is half-cooked. Put tapioca starch to the mixture. Transfer them into a ricer. Press it gently and continuosly to make noodles release into a boiling pot of water. (In case you don’t have ricer at your disposal, you can use a thick plastic bag to do the same method. Cut off multiple small holes at one end and press it to release). When you see floating noodles on the surface, use a slotted spoon to ladle them out onto a bowl of cold water and drain off.
Alternatively: you can find banh canh noodles at Asian stores.
2/ How to make annatto oil: Bring a cup of oil to a boil over a medium heat. Add annatto seeds. Remove them from the heat if you see bubble. Wait for a short while 1-2 minutes. Strain the liquid and omit the seeds, you have something like annatto oil with typical orange-reddish color.
3/ How to make broth: Put pork bones into a pot, fill in water to a specific level that just covers the top of bones. Bring them to a boil and cook for 10 minutes. You will see impurities and bubble rising up at the surface. Strain them out by a ladle or a spoon. Transfer bones into another pot filled with 3-3.5 liters of water. Add a peeled onion and salt. Bring them to a boil and cook on medium heat for another hour. Season the pot with sugar, salt and fish sauce. Occassionally skim off the foam at the top.
4/ Season the crab meat, crab chunks prawns with salt, pepper and fish sauce. Set aside for a 15 minutes. Add vegetable oil and minced garlic onto a large saucepan, saute them until fragrant. Put in crab meats and prawn, stir-fry them until fully cooked. Transfer them to another bowl. Add more cooking oil onto the used pan, stir-fry the crab chunks until we have orange-reddish color.
5/ How to make fish cake: Blend the mixture of fish paste and speck, minced onion stems, wheat flour, chicken stock, salt, pepper, sugar and eggs. Mix them well until all ingredients absorbed. Grease a mortar and pestle with some vegetable oil. Transfer the mixture onto it and grind them manually until you have a chewy and consistent mixture.
To shape them: Put on a plastic wrapper onto a dish or rough surface. Flatten and shape the paste into 0.5 cm thick. Some might prefer fish balls or patty or whatever suits you best.
Pan fry the mixture until golden brown. Then cut them into bite-size pieces.
6/ Transfer the pork broth onto a pot and bring it to a boil. Season it with MSG, sugar, fish sauce and salt. Add home-made noodles to the soup directly.
7/ Ladle all to a serving bowl. Finish the top with stir-fried crab meat, prawn and annatto oil. Garnish your dish with chopped spring onions or Vietnamese mint vegetables.
Can be served with fried bread sticks.