What are Hokkien Noodles?

Malcolm Tatum
Malcolm Tatum

Hokkien noodles are round egg noodles that are usually of medium thickness. Often packaged and sold in refrigerated packages in ethnic food shops and health food stores, these noodles are favorite options for inclusion in stir fried dishes as well as in several varieties of soups and entrees seasoned with mixtures of meats, fish, and vegetables.

Singapore cuisine makes popular use of Hokkien noodles.
Singapore cuisine makes popular use of Hokkien noodles.

Dishes that make use of Hokkien noodles are found all over the world, with some of the most popular recipes originating in Malaysia, Singapore, and China. Singapore is the source of a very simple recipe that can be prepared using a wok or even a large frying pan. Using the Hokkien noodles as stir fry noodles, Hokkien mee pairs the noodle with young shrimp, small sections of pork, and shredded cabbage. The combination is usually seasoned with a small amount of lime and sambal chili.

For a more colorful dish, Hokkien hae mee builds on the same premise. This dish combines the Hokkien and rice noodles, seasoned with a stock made from shrimp and dried prawns. Usually, small chunks of chicken or pork are also tossed into the combination. Fish cakes, a variety of leafy greens in season, various colorful vegetables, green onions, and a shot of lime make up the final product. Often, Hokkien hae mee is given a shot of soy sauce and gently tossed just before serving.

As an ingredient in soups, Hokkien noodles also provide a nice change from Italian type pasta. The rich flavor of the egg noodles is enhanced with the addition of a range of spices, and immersed in a broth made with a mixture of soy sauce, chicken or beef broth, and a selection of colorful vegetables. The soup can be enhanced with the use of barley for a tasty vegetarian dish, or cooked chicken or beef can be added to the soup.

Unlike dried pasta, these noodles should be refrigerated upon purchase. While they have a relatively long shelf life when kept in the refrigerator, many cooks who use Hokkien noodles regularly recommend that the noodles be purchased no more than a few days before use.

Malcolm Tatum
Malcolm Tatum

After many years in the teleconferencing industry, Michael decided to embrace his passion for trivia, research, and writing by becoming a full-time freelance writer. Since then, he has contributed articles to a variety of print and online publications, including wiseGEEK, and his work has also appeared in poetry collections, devotional anthologies, and several newspapers. Malcolm’s other interests include collecting vinyl records, minor league baseball, and cycling.

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Discussion Comments

David09

@anon78253 - I love Chinese noodles. I think I must have survived my college years living off of Ramen noodles alone. It’s got a lot of carbs, but it hit the spot when I was hungry.

I saw Hokkien noodles when I traveled to Indonesia. The noodles are very thick, and recipes call for pork or chicken, oyster sauce, soy sauce, shrimp or fish and garlic. Then add sambal, which is Indonesian chili sauce. What you wind up with is a very hearty meal, enough to satisfy any appetite.

They served them in local shops as well as on the streets. The Indonesian word for these kinds of noodles was “Bakmi” which means meat noodles, and as for texture, that is a very appropriate description.

anon78253

I also would like the recipe for Hokkien noodles.

sista

How can you actually make them?

I am looking for a recipe, not where to buy them.

What type of flour do you need? Very fine one or more like semolina? Lots of egg yolks I imagine, but anything else?

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