1 kgpork ribs, cut into 6cm pieces6spring onions, white part only, thinly sliced4garlic cloves, finely chopped25 gm (5cm piece)ginger, thinly sliced1 tbspwhole black peppercorns1star anise2 tbsplemon juice, plus wedges, to serve2 tbspfish sauce, or to tasteFor deep-frying:vegetable oil4garlic cloves, thinly sliced on a mandolin450 gmfresh rice noodles150 gmbean sprouts1 bunchgarlic chives, cut into 3cm lengths2 cups (loosely packed)each mint, coriander and Thai basil4long red chillies, thinly slicedGinger marinade 10red shallots, coarsely chopped25 gm (5cm piece)ginger, finely chopped10coriander stalks, coarsely chopped2garlic cloves, coarsely chopped60 ml (¼ cup)fish sauce2 tbspcaster sugar
For ginger marinade, crush shallot, ginger, coriander stalks and garlic in a mortar and pestle, then stir in fish sauce and sugar.
Place ribs in a non-reactive container, add marinade, massage into meat and refrigerate for flavours to develop (6 hours-overnight).
Combine ribs, spring onion, garlic, ginger, peppercorns, star anise and 4 litres water in a saucepan over high heat, bring to the boil and skim off impurities. Reduce heat to low, cover and simmer, stirring occasionally, until ribs are tender (2-2½ hours). Season to taste with lemon juice and fish sauce.
Heat vegetable oil to 180C in a deep-fryer or saucepan, add garlic and stir until golden (1-2 minutes; be careful, hot oil will spit). Remove and drain on absorbent paper.
Cook noodles in boiling salted water until tender (1-2 minutes), then drain, divide among bowls, top with ribs, broth, sprouts, herbs, chilli and fried garlic and serve with lemon wedges.
This recipe is from the February 2013 issue of Australian Gourmet Traveller.