Archive for February 7th, 2011

February 7, 2011

Bo’ Kho – Vietnamese Beef Stew

adapted from

no good pictures ): decided to go to a last min superbowl gathering and had nothing to bring but my stew. so i didn’t get pics in time.

oh well.

we had two vietnamese friends at the gathering and they ate it (and liKED it!). so i’m guessing that’s a good sign. will make again.

and take pictures.


  • 2 lbs boneless beef chuck, cut into cubes
  • 1-2 stalks lemongrass, cut into 3 large diagonal pieces (exposes more surface area)
  • 4 tablespoons fish sauce
  • 2 teaspoons Chinese five spice powder
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons brown sugar
  • 2 1/2 tablespoons minced ginger
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 1-2 tbs vegetable oil
  • 1 medium large onion, diced
  • 2 roma tomatoes
  • 1 lb carrot, peeled, cut into large chunks
  • 3 star anise
  • 3 cups beef broth
  • 1 tsp flour/corn starch


  • marinate beef ~ 30 min in ginger, fish sauce, brown sugar, five spice, lemon grass.
  • preheat oven 270F
  • chop veggies. (i like chunky stew.)
  • heat 1-2 tbs vegetable oil in 5 qt dutch oven on high. brown beef on all sides quickly ~ 2 min.
  • remove beef into separate bowl and set aside.
  • add a pat of butter (optional) and saute onions until soft ~5 min.
  • add tomatoes. saute ~ 3 min.
  • add a dash of broth and deglaze.
  • add rest of broth and bring to a boil. reduce heat to simmer. add beef and mix.
  • cover and place in oven ~ 1hr.
  • add carrots, return to oven ~1.5 hr
  • remove from oven. strain out beef etc into separate bowl.
  • over medium high heat, mix in starch (i spoon in broth into a separate small bowl containing starch and mix thoroughly before reintroducing it into the pot.). keep on a high simmer/low boil for ~5 min until soup thickens and reduces some.
  • reintroduce solids.
  • simmer on low until ready to serve.
  • serve with toasted crusty french bread!

edit: probably no news to anyone who’s ever made a stew before (including myself), but dAMN. i just have to reiterate how much better this stuff tasted the next day. that’s when it truly takes on it’s stew-y consistency.

i’ll almost put up with this atrocious weather (20’s?? in hOUSTON?) just so i have a reason to make more stew.