Monday, March 16, 2009

Do you want to eat MEeee.....

A stack of noodles is a common find at every Asian grocery store (kit ai tiam) in Sydney these days. To me, the mere sight of Hokkien mee brings me back to my childhood. When I was young, we ate rice everyday at home. When we had noodles we knew it was a religious feast day or a birthday celebration in the family. Yes, that’s right. We had Hokkien noodle and with some other families using Mee Sua noodle, instead of a birthday cake. Traditional noodles are purposely cut very long, symbolizing longevity and always served at birthdays and weddings.
I remembered Hokkien mee would always be there, high on the altar among the rows of other treats. I would always be restless, wishing the coins my mother threw on the ground in front of the makeshift altar showed the correct faces up as to confirm that the offerings had been duly received by the gods and also for the prayer to be ended, so we could eat before all the good food got cold and turned soggy.
The varieties of interesting noodles available in the stores are endless. There are buckwheat noodles (soba), sweet potato noodles (Korean Chapch'ae noodles), ramen, shanghai noodle and many more. Today, although everyone seems satisfied with store bought noodles, the older Singaporean love of homemade noodles is still present. The best homemade noodles (mee sua) I have ever had are the ones from my wife’s kampong in Sitiawan. My late mother-in law usually had them specially ordered to cook her signature dish of Ang Chiew Mee Sua (Mee sua cooked in Red wine). We will post her recipe the next time we have a birthday celebration in the family.


  1. I know how to make mee hoon kueh..maybe similar..

  2. Wow, I love noodles!
    We eat Soba on New Year's Eve, it means to hope for longevity.

  3. Wow, I love noodles!
    We eat soba on New Year's Eve, it means we wish longevity

  4. Hi Danny,
    Please share your mee hoon kueh with us. I do not know it is the same one my mother used to cook?

  5. Hi YK,
    Hai. We also have mee sua (somen)for the New Year. The Teochew will have their mee sua in a sweet syrupy soup whereas the Hokkchiew will serve theirs in red wine and chicken. Both offer something good for the New Year. Sweet and lucky ( red is a lucky colour).
    Is it not true that you also exchange soba with your new neighbour, hoping that the relationship is long and thin. (laugh)

  6. Here's the receipe...

    actually, I got the recipe from Soy and Pepper's blog. not difficult once u get the hang of it.

  7. Hi Uncle Phil,

    I have been trying to buy some quality dried shrimps. Where can I get it?

    And do you have any recipe or tips on making hong kong style steamed bao?


  8. Hi Anonymous,
    It is funny to address you that way.It is easier for me to track if you have a pen name and still can remain anonymous.Are you living in Sydney? You can usually get them in the asian store. There is a store in Eastwood selling "loose" and not pre-packed. Do not buy those brightly coloured red. Go for the brownish. I do have recipe for bak bao but I normally used stone milled flour instead of those "super white and highly processed flour" used in HK style bao.

  9. Hi Uncle Phil

    yes I am staying in Sydney, eastern surburb. The dried shrimps that the nearby asian store have is not quite what I want. Do you mind provide me the name/address of that store in Eastwood. How do you get the bao soft and break open like a flower at the top? do you use yeast, baking powder?

    Thanx, Soo

  10. Hi Soo,
    It is sold at Yen Yen Supermarket and Tonyong Supermarket.The basic yeast dough is best for home cooking. It may take 2-4 hours to rise until it double in size. This leavened dough is used for making plain steam rolls. For a dough which is light and delicate and is best suited for use in restaurants and specialty bakeries a collate of yeast and baking soda are deployed. You have to start yeast dough first and wait 8- 10 hrs before you add the baking soda. I go into the details later

  11. Hummm... mee sua cook in red wine, something new to me...

    Look forward to the recipe.

  12. Hi Lim,
    You have to wait until I homebrewed the Chinese red wine.I'm afraid it takes a while. You'll be invited to partake in the wine tasting. (haha)