Sunday, 22 April 2012

Mee Hoon Kueh

Growing up at home, Mee Hoon Kueh (面粉馃), literally "Flour Cake" in Hokkien, was something I ordered regularly when my family ate out, and is still something I would readily order when I fly home to visit family and friends. It is a simple hand-made noodle soup with various ingredients, commonly minced pork, leafy vegetables, a poached egg, shitake mushrooms, all topped with fried ikan bilis, or small anchovies.

Prior to my arrival in the UK as an university student, the local government gave us a pamphlet listing recipes contributed by various students who have been or are currently there, that we could make use of should we start to miss the food back home. Amongst them was one for mee hoon kueh. I did not give much thought to it, and soon forgot about it all. When I started this blog however, this was one of the things that I realised I could try doing, given the relatively simple list of ingredients and preparation. Again however, I forgot, until last evening, when a conversation with a friend back home led me to try this at home, limiting myself to Sainsbury's Basics ingredients, where possible.

It turns out that mee hoon kueh is surprisingly easy to make. There are numerous recipes out there on the Internet, but the one that I was drawn to the most was at Soy and Pepper, a food blog written by an overseas Singaporean. As the Sainsbury's Basics range is lacking in both ikan bilis (small anchovies), and even dark green leafy vegetables, I had to leave out some of the ingredients where I can.

Prepare some Sainsbury's Basics Minced Beef by seasoning with Basics pepper and a little Basics vinegar. Wrap and leave in the fridge.

Combine water and Sainsbury's Basics flour in the proportions suggested by Soy and Pepper so that you have a simple dough. Cover and set aside for 30 minutes to an hour.

Prepare your vegetables - I used choi sum bought from Chinatown here. Break the flour ball up into golf balls and flatten each one out as shown. Use extra flour to prevent sticking.

Prepare some stock using Sainsbury's Basics chicken stock cubes.

Add the mince once the stock is boiling. Skim off any scum and unwanted fat that appears.

Pinch off bite-size pieces of dough and add to the pot. They should cook within 10-20 seconds.

Finally, add your vegetables, and an egg to either beat into the soup or to poach.

If only I had discovered this sooner. This proved to be a filling, warm and hearty meal, which, given the recent drop in temperature in the UK, was welcome. The preparation, while not very involved, will involve some waiting time, so perhaps this is best done on weekends, or prepared in advance. The flavour can certainly be worked upon; I have noticed that some other recipes call for the use of shitake mushrooms in addition to ikan bilis to make the stock. Given that the Sainsbury's Basics range has neither of these, perhaps one way to achieve a similar effect is to boil and concentrate stock from Sainsbury's Basics mushrooms and Basics canned tuna.

No comments:

Post a Comment

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...