1lbdried rice vermicelli stickssmall noodle size. Thap Chua brand (but any will do)
Cook noodles according to package instructions, split between 4-5 bowls
Thinly slice shallots, add oil to a pan and saute until light brown.
Add quartered tomatoes, stir fry for 3-5 minutes until slightly soft.
Add shallots, tomatoes, and all remaining soup ingredients into a large pot.
Raise to high heat until it hits a boil, and boils for five minutes.
Reduce the heat to medium-low or low, so it maintains a low boil while you work on the Riêu.
Riêu / Gach / Meatballs
Add shallots into a small food processor, pulse until finely chopped.
Add shrimp, pulse 5-6 times.
Add remaining ingredients (except crab and green onion) and pulse a few times until evenly mixed.
Pour into a mixing bowl, add crab and lightly mix with a spoon.
Using a soup spoon, scoop 1-2 tbsp size meat balls (your choice!) into the pot until you use it all
Raise the heat to high and bring to a boil, then drop heat to a low boil. At most it should take 20 minutes to cook the meatballs all the way through. Check doneness by breaking a meatball in half to make sure its not soft or raw inside.
During the last five minutes of cooking, drop in the chopped green onion so it slightly softens
Evenly divide contents of the soup pot between your 4-5 bowls.
Serve a communal accoutrement plate on the side so each guest can customize their own.