My favourite – Penang Hokkien Mee!
Also known as Hokkien Har Mee. One of the famous hawker food at Penang. It is a dish serve with yellow mee and rice noodles (bee hoon), water spinach (kang kong) and bean sprouts in a fragrant soup which is mainly made from prawn, chilli etc. It is garnished with hard-boiled egg, prawns and crisp deep-fried shallots.
Penang Hokkien Mee or Har Mee
Hokkien Mee – This is Penang Famous hawker style noodle dish, and one of my absolute favourites. It is a must have when you visit Penang.
In Penang we call it hokkien (China’s fujian) mee; however, elsewhere in the world, we call it Har (prawns) mee.
It is a dish of egg and rice noodles in a fragrant soup made up of primarily shrimp and meat(either pork or chicken). Normally, I would use pork broth (with pork ribs and bones) as opposed to chicken, with a couple of kilos of prawns and crushed prawn heads. Brown the pastes until fragrant, add pork and prawn stock and brew for 2-3 hours.
This dish is served by cooking both egg and rice noodles together, garnished with prawns, pork, bean sprouts and last but not least – fried shallots! With chilli (optional).
It is a lot of work to get the stock right; however, now I am using the ready-made paste all the way from Penang. It took me only 30 minutes from preparation to serving. Taste – pretty impressive!
This paste is actually a shrimp paste fried with chilli, so we only need to prepare pork stock. You have a choice to use chicken or pork, but I am using pork based stock. Let’s start!
- Pot A – 2 litees water for stock
- Pot B – 1 litre water in another pot to blanch the pork
- Pot C – 1/2 litre water in separate pot to steam the prawns
- Pot D – 2 litres water for noodle preparation
- 1/2 kilo pork spare ribs
- 1 packet of the Little Nonya Hokkien Prawn Noodle Paste
- 1/2 kilo prawns
- 1 packet egg noodles
- Rice noodles – soak in hot water for 10 minutes to soften (make sure it is submerged properly) – remove from water and set aside
- 1 packet of bean sprouts
- 1 bunch of kangkung (water spinach) – not available during winter, so you can substitute with spinach or fresh lettuce.
- Fried shallots
- Boil water in pots A, B and C; once pot B water is boiling, blanch the spare ribs with boiling water. Discard water. Set the pork aside.
- Once pot A water has boiled, place the pork in the boiling water, lower the heat to medium and boil the stock for 15 minutes.
- Add 1 packet of the Little Nonya Hokkien Noodle paste to the stock and continue to brew for a further 15 minutes.
- While pot C is boiling, steam the prawns for 10 minutes on high heat or until prawns are cooked. Remove and shell the prawns, devein and slice them into half, set aside.
Instructions for preparing the noodles:
Rice Noodles – Place the dried rice noodles in a heat proof container or pot, and boil 1 litre water. Once it is boiled, pour over the rice noodles and let them soak until they softens or until you are ready to cook it.
One person serving
When you are ready to eat – Boil 1 – 2 litre water. Once the water is boiled, add egg and rice noodles together with bean sprouts in the noodle ladle, and cook it in the boiling water for 1-2 minutes. Keep tossing until all ingredients are cooked evenly.
Pour the noodles and bean sprouts into a bowl, followed by pouring boiling hot stock onto the noodles. Use your ladle to hold onto noodles, and from the bowl pour back the stock to the pot. Repeat this process once or twice to make sure the noodles are ready. This is to make sure that your noodles are piping hot when serving. Garnish with bean curd puff, chicken and prawns.
Number of people: 4-6 (based on 1 packet of paste – 250g)
Preparation time: 10 minutes
Cooking time: 30 minutes
Final note – home cooking is not hard, even if you are living far away from home or just wanting to learn about Malaysian dishes. You just need to take the first step, and start with something very simple and doable. Make everything you do in life fun and enjoyable, and make home cooking a norm in your life!