It’s been ages since I did a let’s cook blog post of some description. A friend asked if I could provide a recipe for the mee goreng mamak I made over Hari Raya this year and I thought of obliging. Gives me an excuse to write a short blog post while I’m at it.

This is not my signature dish, or to go to dish, if you wanna call it that, but I’ve dabbled in making mee goreng (stir fried noodles) for the longest time to the point that I do end up making it in a style reminiscent of a mamak version of said dish. The fact that this was pointed by many friends as long as 14 years ago, I think that’s enough validation that I’ve got something right. Of course, the litmus test is to have a mamak who makes this dish for a living try my version of the mee goreng, and giving me the thumbs up, only then I can proudly say that I’ve passed with flying colours.

Anyways, this is what I think a mee goreng mamak should be like if you want to attempt this at home. In my opinion, a mee goreng dish is mamak-ified when: 1. it has a sour-ish tinge to the taste, which I replicate by squeezing lime into the mix at the end, and 2. it has to have the appropriate rencah – I use thin beef slices (in place of paru goreng) and I don’t think prawn is right (as one does in Penang char kuey teow), but of course if your local/fav mamak stall does it with prawn, I’m not gonna argue.

Here’s the rencah for my version of the mee goreng mamak (serves 2-3 people in modest portions, or one if very hungry):

A small packet of yellow mee/noodles
2 shallots (bawang merah)
2 cloves garlic
One green chilli, sliced.
Some cabbage, chopped
Some greens (sawi/leaf mustard, but as I can’t stand sawi I used something more palatable, in this case, lambs lettuce)
Tauhu goreng (a couple, sliced)
Cucur bawang/udang[1] (a couple, sliced)
Two tablespoon of home-made chilli paste (chilli Boh in layman’s parlance, but not a fan of commercially available ones due to the amount of preservatives in them)
Two tablespoon of kuah rojak (optional, and in the one made for Raya I actually used kuah kacang)
Kicap (soy sauce – the manis/sweet version by Habhal was used in this instance)
Two eggs
A little bit of beef, thinly sliced
One half of a lime (can use the whole hog, if you like – especially if you have those small limau purut)

Tumis/sautée the shallots and garlic in some oil over medium fire. Add the cabbage, sliced beef and green chilli, and after a couple of minutes, the chilli paste. Add the mee/noodles and mix well. You may wish to bring the heat up and as you are constantly mixing the ingredients around, there shouldn’t be any concern about burning the dish. Add a few dashes of kicap and the kuah rojak, as well as the cucur and tauhu. If you have cooked fried rice/noodles before, it really doesn’t matter by now the order of things. Crack them two eggs and add to the mix – I tend to fry the egg at the side of the mix before mixing it all up. Doing it too early on and mixing the eggs into the whole mixture makes the eggs “disappear” into the mix and I get right annoyed when people do that. Add the greens, as it should wilt in mee goreng mamak but I prefer it to not be too soggy – hence, adding it at the end. Squeeze the lime and mix the whole thing well.

Pop the required portion on the plate, serve hot with bawang goreng and a slice of lime as garnishing, or if you are feeling saucy, telur mata goyang (fried egg, sunny side up). Fork and spoon, not chopsticks.

Best accompanied by a tall cold glass of young coconut water (ayaq nyoq muda) with ice (shaved, if you can)[2]. Enjoy.

[1]Easy to make. Take a look at how my dad makes them:

[2]My best mamak fried noodle experience is in Taiping at the Casual Market, where the drinks stall serves this superb glass of ayaq nyoq.