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Vermicelli Noodle Bowl

Inspired by phở, this brothy soup is the ultimate comfort food, and deeply soothing. You can mix it up as you please—use soba or udon noodles, add charred chicken or poached salmon, and whatever vegetables you have at hand.

Prep Time

10 mins

Cook Time

20 mins








100g vermicelli rice noodles

250g bok choy, choy sum, or broccolini, halved lengthwise

1 spring onion, thinly sliced

2 tsp toasted sesame seeds


1 tbsp sesame oil

4 cloves garlic, finely grated

30g ginger, finely grated (one large thumb)

4 dried shiitake mushrooms

4 cups water

1 tbsp miso paste

2 x 5g sachets dashi powder, optional, see Note

1 tbsp soy sauce, or tamari


2 tbsp neutral oil

300g firm tofu

1 tbsp soy sauce, or tamari



For the dashi broth, heat sesame oil in a large heavy-based pot on medium low heat.

Add garlic and ginger and cook, stirring often, until bubbling and softened (1 minute) ensuring the garlic does not catch and burn.

If it starts to catch, add a little water to buy you some time.

Add dried mushrooms and water and bring to a boil.

Reduce heat to a simmer and cook until broth is flavourful and mushrooms are tender (20 minutes).

Use a slotted spoon to remove the mushrooms, put aside and when cool enough to handle, thinly slice them.

Whisk in the miso paste, dashi powder if using, and soy or tamari.

Turn off the heat, add sliced mushrooms back in, and leave to sit while you prepare your other ingredients.

This broth can be made in advance and will keep in a covered container in the fridge for 4–5 days.

Place the vermicelli noodles in a heatproof bowl and cover with boiling water. Leave to sit for 5 minutes while you get everything together.


Remove the tofu from the packet, drain, and pat dry.

Cut into 5cm/2in slices, then sandwich between paper towels to remove excess liquid, pressing down to release as much as possible.

Heat oil in a pan on medium heat, and fry tofu until crispy and golden (4 minutes each side).

Transfer cooked tofu to a small bowl, season with soy sauce, and set aside.

Bring your broth back to the boil, then drop in bok choy and immediately remove from the heat.

Leave to sit for 1 minute to blanch.

If you’re using a heartier green such as choy sum or broccoli, leave to sit a little longer so it can soften slightly.

Once the vermicelli noodles are transparent, drain them, and divide between serving bowls.

Divide broth and greens over the noodles and top with crispy tofu.

Garnish with spring onion/scallion and toasted sesame seeds.


You can use an additional 2 tbsp miso paste in place of the dashi powder to make this vegan.

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