Though it shares two essential elements with soup—the bowl and the broth—pho is not soup. It’s a traditional Vietnamese noodle dish that functions as a full, hearty meal. Street vendors have fueled pho’s status as Vietnam’s national dish, and its quick preparation has found plenty of fans among the country’s young, fast-paced population. Pho’s international profile has also been steadily rising since the Vietnam War, when immigrants relocated in vast numbers to Los Angeles and other major cities around the world.
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