Mee Pok (tar – dry version) to me should be officialised as Singapore’s national food or noodle dish, forget about chilli crabs. The unique blend of black rice vinegar, chilli paste, bak poh (lard cubes) and fettucine like wanton noodles stir through fragrant fried minced pork and shitake mushrooms will send any true blooded Singaporean to food heaven.
I must admit, my first time trying it, I was not that impressed but it has grown on me. Now, I am a Mee Pok fan – confession, yes I am on my way being integrated into the society here. To satiate my on and off cravings for it, I have decided to master my hand in making it at home.
- 400g mee pok (flat wanton noodle or tagliatelle)
- 100-150 g minced pork
- 1-2 shallots finely sliced
- 1 small pip of garlic, minced
- 2 large pieces of shitake mushroom, sliced (if dried, you need to soak them in hot water first til soften, then clean and slice them)
- 2 tsp bak poh or bak eu or bacon fat
- 2 tbp of chilli paste*
- soya sauce and white pepper to taste
- 1 tbp black rice vinegar
*chilli paste – make this paste :
10dried chillies soaked in hot water for 30 minutes (discard the water save 1 tbp ) + 1 tsp taucheo (minced bean paste or miso ), blend all into a fine paste. Set aside. Heat up 3 tbp of oil and add the chilli paste to the hot oil and fry for 5 seconds, switch fire to low, let it slowly simmer, stir well for about 3 minutes. If paste gets too dry add 1 tsp of oil more. Set aside. Any leftovers can be stored in the fridge for 2 weeks.
Minced pork – marinade with a pinch of salt, a little sugar, 1 tsp of soya sauce and a dash of white pepper. Mix the mixture well. Set aside.
On a separate pot, heat up 2 ltrs of water to boil + 1 tbp of oil, once the water is boiling, drop in the fresh flat wanton noodles and boil for further 1 minute to soften the noodles up. Use a pair of chopsticks to stir the noodles loose. If using dried noodles or pasta follow the packet’s instructions. Strain the cooked noodles in a colander and run cold water through the noodles for 2 seconds to stop the cooking and making the noodles soggy. Leave aside.
In a sautepan, heat the oil add in the minced shallots, garlic, pork lard (bak eu), minced pork and shitake mushroom, for about 1-2 minutes on medium heat . Break the minced pork up, fry for another minute or so until pork is cooked through. Pour in the black rice vinegar and mix well for about 5 seconds. Switch heat to very low. Add the noodles, and season with soya sauce, kicap manis, salt and chilli paste. Stir well. Taste to see if salty or spicy enough to your taste. Adjust accordingly.
Divide the noodles into 2 bowls. Garnish with some chopped lettuce and spring onions, a dash of white pepper. Serve hot.
** you can add in fish balls if you desire.
fresh mee pok noodles