Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Pan Mee

Inspiration - For as long as I can remember, this dish is called "min fun keuh"(cantonese) or "mee hun ker"(hokkien). I grew up with my grandma cooking this dish so I thot this was only made by my grandma. He he he, of course when I enter the whole of hawker food, I realized this dish is widely available and called "pan mee". I don't know why it is called pan mee (cos maybe they make the dough to noodles-like!! - I like mine the traditional hand pulled way) but I think the min fun kueh translation is more accurate. It translates directly to mean - flour noodles! which is exactly what this dish is made of. I started making this dish myself a couple of months ago...I never attempt it myself cos either my mom or grandma would cook this and I just eat. my 2 fears on making this dish - 1) I dread the kneading of the flour dough and 2) can't really master making it to thin slices. But I love this dish and it is not difficult if you can get over the two fears I mentioned :)

Simple ingredient -
1) Flour - all purpose flour - mixed with water and knead to form dough
2) Soup - ikan bilis (anchovies) boiled
3) Condiments - pork slices, fish ball/pork balls, vege - choy sum or that leafy vege - can't remember the name, fried ikan bilis, fried shallots - as desired.

Simple steps -
1) First the dough! Get ready for some abs training :)
It's easy - mix flour with some water and a bit of oil/salt and start kneading. continue to knead, add flour and water as required. A smooth dough should be formed. To know if dough is ready, make sure dough is not sticky on yr fingers. If yes, just add more flour and continue to knead. When dough is formed and ready, just cover with a piece of damp cloth and let it set for a while.
My grandma use to add one egg to the dough (to make the dough more fragrant) but I don't cos I think a bit of oil does the trick to make the dough really smooth /elastic and easy to pull to thin slices.

2) The soup is simple for me - ikan bilis soup. I usually put a bit of oil, and then stirfry the ikan bilis for a while and then add water. close the lid and let it boil for 20 mins and you will have a lovely soup base. Of course, you can use other soup base eg, pork ribs, chicken etc.

3) Other condiments - vegetables - I just use choy sum cos I can't get the other vege that is usually put into the soup....errr it is called "kau kei". hmmm I don't know.
I have some pork/fish balls so I am throwing that in. And to make the soup sweeter, I marinate some sliced pork with just salt, soy sauce, pepper and corn-flour.

4) Now the action start, when the soup is ready......lower down the fire, wash yr hands and get to work. Ok this, I really can't tell you how to do it, you just have to practise and eventually, hopefully you will get it. I will take a small piece of dough and with my thumb and finger start stretching it till it gets to a thin slice. Then I will pinch the slices into the soup.

5) errr.... can or not? Next time, I will try to tape the process and maybe it will be clearer. I am still learning to be an expert like my grandma, her hands are so mobile, it's like a automated machine and each piece comes out nicely. Mine still has holes in them sometimes - ha ha ha but eat at home, never mind la.
Once you have pulled all the dough into soup, you can turn up the fire, add all the condiments (pork slices, pork balls, vege etc) into the soup and let it boil for another 5-10 mins. Add salt of required.

6) It's that easy and voila! Ready to eat my "Min fun kueh"! Yum yum!


MisSmall said...

It's rather similiar with a Foochow noodle dish. Except that the flour mixture is poured directly onto the wok and then scrapped into the soup base. If that makes sense.

kher said...

i love your food blog. i will drop by more often to check out your cooking. love your "mee hoon kwei" post.

peiyun said...

Aww.. This is the Must-Eat-Dish on my Mum's menu everytime I go home!

twosuperheroes said...

Your min fun kou looks really good! I cook mine the same way too. Haha. Definitely one of my favourite dishes, this one. :p

Peb said...

hi Missmall - interesting..I will check out this foochow noodle dish. thanks.

Hi Kher - Thanks for the compliment.

Hi Peiyun - yeah! nothing like home cooked food huh!!

Hi twosuperheroes - Thanks. Yeah! I just love it and can cook it anytime. Especially now I just got a mixer, I just let the mixer do the dough. :)

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