For the Soup Base
- To make a more flavourful soup, charring the onion and ginger goes a long way. Do this by simply grilling the onion and ginger until their surface is slightly blackened – take care not to overdo this and actually burn them. Once they are nicely charred, remove from the heat and set them aside.
- Dry fry the cinnamon, white peppercorns, star anise, cloves, and coriander seeds over low heat in a stockpot. Fry the herbs until fragrant.
- Once the oils in the herbs have been released, add the vegetable stock, charred onion and ginger, carrots, shiitake mushrooms, and soy sauce. Turn the heat up to high until the stock begins to boil.
- Once the stock begins to boil, reduce the heat to medium low and cover with a lid. Allow to simmer for 60-90 mins.
- When the soup is done, strain it through a wire-mesh strainer and season with salt. Keep the soup warm for later.
For the Noodles
- Prepare the rice noodles according to packet instructions. Once cooked, drain the noodles through a sieve and rinse under running water to stop the cooking.
- Heat the oil in a pan over medium high heat. Pan fry the brocollini until tender and lightly browned. You can add some salt to season the vegetables. Do the same for the button mushrooms and baby bok choy. Set aside the toppings.
- Add the portions of noodles into their own separate bowls. Top with the pan fried vegetables, five spice tofu, and bean sprouts, then, pour over with the warm soup.
- Garnish with lime wedges and Vietnamese mint and serve hot.