I don’t know about you but I’m a big fan of Pho, the Vietnamese-inspired restaurant that opened last year in Grand Central. It’s an ideal spot for a quick bite to eat with friends, or as a solo dining experience before or after catching a train at New Street station.
Having always been a huge fan of noodles (#carbz4lyf) when Pho opened I spent a considerable amount of time, and my hard earned dabloons, on trying as many tasty dishes as I could. From huge steaming bowls of soup and noodles to street food inspired light bites, Pho offers what you’d expect from this niche of eatery, but their hidden treasure in my opinion is the stir fried morning glory.
At around £6-£7 a plate it’s not cheap, but it’s worth every penny. I’m sure Pho believes it’s to be shared but me being me just eats the lot. Standard *bows*
Morning glory hadn’t crossed my radar before (despite being the best named vegetable on the planet) but after discovering it’s a type of spinach *high fives to the mighty green stuff* I decided on my first visit to try it. And I tried it again and again and again and.. you get the picture, it’s just delicious. Garlicky and packed with insane flavour for what’s essentially just a skinny green leaf, the morning glory dish blew my mind as well as my tastebuds.
Since then I have told everyone about it, I tell strangers about it, I have dreams about it.
With that in mind, imagine my girly squeals when on popping into my favourite oriental supplies shop – Day In Supermarket in The Arcadian – for my weekly lunchtime mooch I discovered bags of the stuff in the fresh vegetable section. Feeling a sudden burst of confidence I decided to grab a bag (it cost £1.60, price varied depending on weight) and have a bash at making my own version of the Pho gem.
If you’ve not been in there but are a fan of more exotic vegetables it’s well worth a visit. As well as Chinese cabbages and pak choi, today they also had Chinese chives and mooli (the white skinny turnip-looking veg below – anyone tried it?) which I’ll perhaps buy next time when I’m feeling more adventurous.
I picked up a few other goodies to try including some jasmine tea and a chilli dipping sauce. I also found a noodle made from green tea – anyone!? Answers on a postcard…
I digress. So what’s in the magical morning glory dish that’s got everyone so excited? Now, I’ve previously badgered the staff in the restaurant as to what goes into a plate of this stuff, and I have to say reports have varied. It’s obviously laden with fresh garlic and soy sauce, but something tells me there’s a ‘hush hush’ ingredient that’s a secret from us mere mortals.
Anyway, based on what info I’ve been given I’m going to use what brains (guesswork) I have left to whip up a plate of the good stuff to have with some chicken for my lunch. I’ll post my version of the recipe later today if it’s worked – wish me luck.
Stir fried the MG with garlic, pinch of chilli and light soy sauce. Half the pack made 1 portion – its shrinks (as you’d expect) like spinach. Would make a tasty side dish, or the MG itself could be used in a ramen instead of pak choi.