Stir-fried noodles of Hokkien origin is stir-fried with eggs, shrimp, squid, slices or pork belly and braised in umami-rich prawn stock and garnished with chives and served with spicy sambal
HOKKIEN PRAWN MEE
In case you ever wonder what Hokkien is, it is basically one of the Chinese ethnic groups that originated from the Fujian province in China. Singapore fried Hokkien mee is made by stir-frying two different types of noodles with eggs and slices of pork belly and then braised in prawn stock and then topped with shrimp, squid, bean sprouts, chives, and sometimes crispy pork cubes and served with spicy sambal and squeeze of kalamansi for that extra zing. The flavor is simply bombastic if you ask me!
WHICH NOODLES TO USE FOR SINGAPORE FRIED HOKKIEN MEE
Singapore fried Hokkien mee usually features two different type of noodles.
1. Hokkien noodles/yellow noodles
Hokkien noodles are made of wheat and usually yellow in color (and that’s why it’s called yellow noodles sometimes), they are round and thick.
Substitute for Hokkien noodles: I use fresh lo mein noodles. You can use cooked spaghetti noodles too
2. Thick bee hoon /rice noodles
This is basically rice vermicelli noodles, but the thicker version. I use what the Vietnamese call bun bo hue noodles as the thick bee hoon.
Substitute for thick bee hoon: If you can’t find the thicker version, you can use the regular thin version.
Okay, please don’t freak out when you see the list of ingredients on the recipe list. Majority of them are available at your local grocery store with few exceptions like anchovy sauce or fish sauce, Hokkien noodles, rice vermicelli, noodles, Chinese chives (usually flat and wide), you will need to get them from Asian grocery stores.
TIPS TO MAKE THE BEST FRIED HOKKIEN MEE
1. Use large shrimp
Fresh or frozen doesn’t really matter. Of course, if you can get the fresh ones, go for them. I’ve been using frozen large shrimp and they are sweet and never mushy
2. Use fresh squid
I can’t say the same with the squid when it comes to frozen. Frozen package squid is pretty much tasteless! I haven’t found any that that taste good at all! Please use fresh squid (or previously frozen is fine too), but not the prepackaged one from the freezer
3. Don’t be skimpy on the oil
You need the oil to make sure your fried Hokkien mee is flavorful and “shiny”
4. Precook the noodles
Fresh Hokkien noodles need to be cook briefly in hot water, about 2-3 minutes. If you use dried thick bee hoon as I did, you need to boil them until they are cooked through. If you use fresh bee hoon, you only need 1 or 2 minutes to briefly blanch them
5. Cook the seafood first
The shrimp and squid are stir-fried first and then dish out and set aside. This will prevent the seafood from overcooking. They are added back at the very last step of cooking
YOUR COOKING GAME PLAN
1. Things you can do the day before:
– Prepare the shrimp. Peel the shells for the prawn stock
– Make the prawn stock
This can be made the day before.
– If you buy your bean sprouts a few days before, make sure you know how to keep your bean sprouts fresh
2. On the day of cooking:
– Precook the noodles as directed on the package and then rinse with cold water
– Thinly slice the pork belly
– Slice the squid into rings
Now are you ready to make your own fried Hokkien mee? 🙂 Let me know how it turns out if you do try it!
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Singapore Fried Hokkien Mee
Cook the noodles:
- Cook both noodles according to instructions and then rinse with cold water to stop the cooking process. Set aside
Prepare the stock:
- Preheat a large pot. Add 1 Tbsp cooking oil and the shells and stir fry until the shells turn pink. Add anchovy sauce, and brown sugar. Add the chicken stock and bring to a simmer. Lower the heat, cover and let it gently simmer for 30 minutes. Strain and discard all the solids. You will get about 4 cups or a bit more of the stock. Have a taste and add a bit more anchovy sauce if needed
Stir-frying the noodles:
- Pat the shrimp and squid dry with an absorbent paper towel. Heat a large wok or if you don't have a wok, you can use a large skillet. Add 1 Tbsp of cooking oil, garlic stir-fry for 10 seconds. Add in the shrimp and squid and stir-fry until the shrimp turn pink and squid are cooked through, usually doesn't take long. Dish them out and set aside
- In the same wok/skillet, add in 2 more Tbsp of oil. Pour in the eggs and scramble them. Breaking the eggs into smaller pieces. Push them to the side. Add both rice noodles and egg noodles. Add 3 ladles of the shrimp stock and stir fry for about 3 minutes
- Add bean sprouts and chives. Stir again to mix everything. Add the shrimps and squid and the rest of the prawn stock. Gently toss to mix. Have a taste and add more fish sauce if needed. The noodles should be a bit semi-wet. Portion out into an individual serving plate or just dish out to a large serving platter. Served with kalamansi/limes and a side of sambal chili. Serve immediately