I grew up eating Rice Krispies for breakfast with cold milk and sugar, a lot of sugar. I probably emptied half the sugar bowl every morning before school.
I would never eat that way now but I’ve had to work hard to transcend my old habits. Which brings me to the subject of starting the day with hot soup. Pho is what’s for breakfast in Vietnam. It’s a noodle soup made with a hearty broth and a variety of vegetables.
If you grew up eating processed carb-milk-sugar soup for breakfast, like I did, the idea of eating hot vegetable soup might seem odd. But really, what’s weird here? Eating fresh vegetables or eating rice crushed up with a bunch of things you can’t pronounce and shaped back into rice again?
Pho is pronounced “fuh” or “foe” depending on who you ask. I tried my first bowl at Oasis Teriyaki & Pho in Pullman, which serves a variety of Asian fare. The restaurant has the ambiance of a 1990s Taco Time, which is what it once was and why there is a neon cactus inside.
I ordered the Vegetable Pho ($9.45), a massive bowl of soup with cabbage, broccoli, red and green pepper and rice noodles. It came with a plate of toppings – lime, cilantro, mung bean sprouts, jalapeños and onions. The broth was flavorful but light. I could have ordered pho with steak, meatballs, chicken or seafood ($9.45-$12.45). As it was that bowl of soup lasted me three meals and warmed me up for the rest of the day. Is it authentic? I couldn’t tell you. I’ve only had one bowl but I’ll be looking for more.
Oasis Teriyaki & Pho, 530 E. Main St., Pullman, (509) 332-3009