Sep 15, 2014

Recipe to try : Penang Hokkien Prawn Mee

To make about 8 bowls (about 2 liters of stock)

Preparing the stock 

500 gm (1.1 lbs) prawns
80 g (2 oz) dried shrimps (udang kering)
  1. Peel and separate the heads and shells of all the prawns. There is no need to give the prawns a hair cut as everything is used. The heads will be used for the prawn stock and blended (along with the dried shrimps). The shells will be added to the anchovies stock and strained away later. 
  2. Heat up 1 Tbps of oil in a wok and roast the dried shrimps for 10 minutes. Then add the heads and roast till they turn golden orange. 
  3. Add 1 liter of water in a pot, add the heads and dried shrimps. Use a stick blender or standing blender to blend it finely. You should see some orange or red colored foam at the surface of the stock. 
  4. Cover the pot and lightly boil the stock for about half an hour. Then let it steep overnight for maximum flavor extraction. You can also do this earlier in the morning and let the flavors develop by evening. 
Preparing the prawns
  1. Set aside 15 pieces of prawn meat for the topping.   
  2. Blanch the prawns in the boiling stock using a strainer. Do this in small batches as the prawns need to cook quickly or the meat will fall apart on the sides. If you are doing this the day before serving, refrigerate the prawns. They keep well after they are cooked.   
Preparing the broth
100 g (3 oz) fried anchovies (ikan bilis)
2.5 cm (1 in) ginger
1 Tbsp chicken powder 
25 gm rock sugar
A bowl of sambal chilli (50 ml)
Water to make up to 2 litre of broth

  • The next step is to prepare the rest of the stock which uses stuff that needs to be strained: ikan bilis, smashed ginger and the prawn shells. 
  • Put them in a pot with 1 liter of water and simmer for about an hour. 
  • Strain the Ikan bilis and shell stock into the prawn stock. 
  • Leave the broth on a light simmer. 
  • Add the rock sugar, chicken stock (bouillon powder or concentrate) and sambal chilli. The chicken stock flavouring gives a mellow body to the broth.  Add chicken meat if you want. I add a drum stick or something into the soup and take the chicken out to peel later on.
  • Add the belacan and a bowl of the sambal chili into the broth. 
  • Add some water along the way. You need to end up with about 2 liters of broth for 8 bowls.

Garnishing and serving
25-30 pieces prawn meat 
250gm water convolvulous (kangkong)
250gm  beansprouts / taugeh
4 eggs cut into 2
Fried shallots
250gm yellow mee
250gm  rice vermicelli (bee hoon)
250-400 gm chicken meat30-40 slices of fish cake
  1. Slice the boiled prawns into halves. 
  2. Slice the fish cakes. 
  3. Fried shallots are important.
  4. Soften the bee hoon in water for about 30 minutes.  
  5. When it is time to serve, assemble a serving of the bean sprouts, mee, bee hoon and kangkong in a bowl. Blanch the contents of the bowl in rolling boiling water for about half a minute. This will also remove the smell of the yellow noodles. Put back into the bowl. Garnish with slices of prawns, chicken and fish cake. Pour in the boiling broth and drain. Do it twice. Garnish with fried shallots and serve immediately with plates of sambal chilli on on the side.  
Happy trying!!!!

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