Cookbook Challenge W16 (Noodle) Mee Siam

Lontong, mee siam, fried carrot cake and kaya toast are just some of my favourite breakfast that I must have when I am back in Singapore. I will take an early drive to the nearest hawker center for my daily morning fix. It is normal to have something spicy along with a super sweet kopi (coffee with condensed milk) for breakfast. And since I am usually back only for a short visit, I tend to indulge in more than one breakfast a day!

Typical Singapore breakfast

Typical Singaporean breakfast

I went through about 6 cookbooks trying to find something that hit home. I always wanted to make Mee Siam but it does require a fair bit of work. Mister made belachan recently and since there is a stash for me to play with, I thought why not? The recipe may seem a little daunting but I am sure you should be able to find belachan in Asian grocery shop. I am just spoilt since Mister makes really good and spicy ones, I tend to shun away from store bought.

This recipe is taken from Authetic Recipes from Singapore by David Wong.

Mee siam

Mee siam

Sambal belachan – This recipe is taken from the book


  • 10 finger length chillies, deseeded and sliced
  • 2tbsp belachan (dried prawn paste), toasted
  • 3tbsp fresh lime juice
  • 1tsp sugar
  • 1/2 tsp salt


  1. Grind all ingredients in a mortar o blend to make s rough paste. Keeps in refrigerator for about a week
Mee siam paste

Mee siam paste


Mee Siam sauce

  • 5tbsp of dried prawns, soaked in water to soften
  • 10 candlenuts, roughly chopped
  • 10 or 80g of shallots
  • 6 cloves of garlic, peeled
  • 1 tsp of belachan (dried prawn paste)
  • 5tbsp of oil
  • 1/2 cup of unsalted peanuts, roasted and coarsely chopped
  • 3tbsp black bean paste
  • 6 tbsp of sugar
  • 6 tbsp of tamarind pulp mashed with 1 250ml warm water, squeezed and strained for juice
  • 1 stalk lemongrass, bruised and finely chopped
  • 1/2 tbsp black soy sauce
  • Salt and white pepper to taste
Little fried tofu

Little fried tofu

Mee Siam

  • 30 dried chillies (about 100g), cut into lengths, deseeded and soaked in water to soften
  • 3 tbsp oil
  • 250g rice vermicelli (beehoon), soaked in cold water to soften
  • 2 cups of bean sprouts
  • 2 slabs of fried tofu, diced and pan fried till golden brown
  • 12 big prawns, boiled for 1 or 2 mins in 4 cups of water. Prawn stock reserved
  • 8 quail eggs or 2 hard boiled eggs halved
  • Sambal belachan
  • 4 limes
Bee hoon

Bee hoon stir fried with chilli paste


  1. Grind the dried chillies in a paste and put aside
  2. Prepare the mee siam sauce by grinding the dried prawns, candlenuts, shallots, garlic and belachan (add more if you like more heat) in a blender, adding oil if necessary to keep the blades turning
  3. Prepare the prawns and quail eggs and set aside
  4. Heat the oil over a medium heat and stir fry the paste for about 5 mins. Add the peanuts, black bean paste and sugar and stir fry for another minute. Add the prawn stock, tamarind juice, lemon grass and soy sauce and bring to a boil. Then lower heat and allow it to simmer gently, uncovered for 5 mins. Season with salt and pepper. Remove from heat and set aside
  5. Heat the oil and stir fry 3 tbsp of chilli paste for about 1 min. Then add the drained noodles and stir fry to coat the noodles so they take a red colour
  6. To serve, divide the noodles into 4 serving bowls. Top the noodles with bean sprouts, fried tofu, prawns and eggs. Ladle the hot sauce over. Place lime halves at the side
Mee Siam

Laying out the mee siam

Having sambal belachan made before hand definitely make this whole process a lot easier. It is not definitely not a hard dish to make. It just needs a little more planning and little steps to make the final dish.

Mee Siam

Mee Siam

I was quite surprised that Mister never had Mee Siam before. Definitely glad that he likes it and finish the whole bowl faster than me! It is spicy and sour. There is a lot of different textures and flavours in one bowl. A tiny squeeze of the lime juice transforms the dish and making it more alive. It is worth the effort and something that I will make from time to time when I miss my morning bowl of Mee Siam.

Please visit the other beautiful recipes from fellow bloggers:

Ange from Vicious AngeStir fried hokkien noodles with sweet pork fillets
Leigh from Chit Chat ChompPrawn, noodles & nori parcels; Cucumber & prawn rolls
Sarah from The Sugar JunkieBeef & noodle salad
Shellie from Iron Chef ShellieChow mein
Carolyn from Gluten ShmootenAsian chicken noodle broth
Anthea from What’s For Tea?Beef & bok choy noodle stir fry
Silvermoon Dragon from Dragon MusingsUse your noodle salad
Rizka from ini, ituChiang Mai noodles
Agnes from Off the SporkChinese mushrooms with cellophane noodles
Cherrie from Sweet Cherrie PieNoodle salad with crispy tofu
Kate from Something by KateMiso broth with somen noodles, shiitake & pumpkin
Bri from Bri EatsGnocchi and rice noodles from scratch
Yen from Food for FourCrispy vermicelli noodles
Maree from Melbourne DelectableLaksa
Kat from Spatula, Spoon and SaturdayFiery Dan Dan Noodles
Rilsta from My Food TrailChicken, pork & rice noodle stir fry