888 Hokkien Mee Penang Travelers Love
Most true-blue Penangites get very homesick whenever they leave Penang and must have Hokkien Mee pit stop the moment they arrive at the island.
Aside to Char Koay Teow, this spicy soup and bursting with prawn flavored soup stock makes mouths water.
Homesick for Hokkien Mee
I was working in KL for a year. That was dreadful enough. I shudder when I think of folks who live aboard.
How could we hope to survive without our basic Hokkien hawker food?
Penangites miss their street food whenever they are abroad.
Even going on vacation, I get homesick and miss local Penang food.
What I do is this.
It’s a Penang thing. I will have my Hokkien Mee just before my departure and then the first thing when I land.
Ask your Penang Hokkien friends. It’s almost cultural. It’s crazy.
When the craving kicks in, it’s tough. Pungent smelly prawn heads boiled for soup stock?
You’ve got to be joking, right?
Nope, I could wax lyrical about this.
Sing for Hokkien Mee
The pure shrimpy stock is a signature scent that sets prawn lovers drooling.
I mean, I would rate it A+ as it’s on the top of every food hunter’s list.
The color of the soup turns a stunning orangey-red prawn consomme; It’s full-bodied spicy, piping hot and win hands down with its spicy aroma and repertoire garnish of prawns, a boiled egg and pork slices.
Blanched yellow noodles and rice vermicelli never tasted so good in the soup made sweet with a crab thrown in the pot and pork ribs.
Top that with crunchy water spinach, crisp bean sprouts and extra ingredients like crackling roast pork, tender spare ribs, boiled pigskin, and even stewed chicken feet, you’ll get an idea of what a Hokkien haven is like.
Stir in a spoonful of chili paste to heighten the taste of the piping hot soup. Topped that with fragrant fried shallots packs a distinctive punch that transforms a first-timer to a loyal customer.
Top of food hunting list to Penang is Prawn Mee, a soupy noodle dish known as Hokkien Mee.
Rated A++ this pure shrimpy stock is a signature scent that sets prawn lovers drooling.
Succulent, spicy, stunning color, piping hot, this orangey-red Asian prawn consomme is a very much sought after by outstation visitors that wins hands down with its spicy aroma and repertoire garnish of prawns.
Complete with crunchy water spinach, crisp bean sprouts and extra ingredients enjoy crackling roast pork, tender spare ribs, boiled pigskin, and even stewed chicken feet!
They heighten the taste of the piping hot soup with a spoonful of chili paste, topped with fragrant fried shallots packs a delicious punch that converts a first-timer to a follower.
For many Penangites returning home, Hokkien Mee is THE hawker dish that they make a beeline for! It’s a good and A list item not to be missed.
Hokkien Mee is an Everyday Anytime Meal
Penang’s favorite street food meal for breakfast, lunch, dinner, and supper that draws the crowds at night time is 888 Hokkien Mee at Presgrave Street.
The three of us were at Hin Bus Depot checking out the exhibits and chilling at the Traven with our cold brew.
It was that blue hour at dusk. We all had separate dinners to attend.
Then one smart Fish said, “We’re just a hop and a skip away from 3rd Road (Sar Tiao Lor) Lebuh Presgrave 888 Hokkien Mee.”
We look at each other.
“We only need 30minutes for a quick fix!”
Did the next hilariously funny thing. We all called text and postponed our individual dinners with others.
Parked awkwardly. Stood in the queue. Ordered. Self-serve. Ate with gusto.
And was out in 30 minutes.
“Best quickie I had in a long time,” someone remarked.
Need I say more?
Add on galore with braised pig’s intestines, spare ribs, boiled pig skin, roast pork and fish ball.
Look out for the tender pork knuckle meat!
The standard bowl is RM4.50 David’s big bowl (at the top) with extra crispy roast pork costs RM7.50
Penang Hokkien Mee Recipe – You can make at home
The most important base is the soup stock.
Hokkien Mee Soup Stock
10 dried chilies, soaked
10 shallots, skinned peeled
2 cloves garlic, peeled
2-3 Tbsp cooking oil
500g prawn shells and heads
20g rock sugar
3 liters water
1 whole chicken, cut into pieces
Salt to taste
The next is making the Chili Paste.
15 dried chilies, soaked to soften
5 fresh red chilies
5 shallots, peeled/skinned
¼ tsp salt
1 tsp sugar
Getting the noodles
800g yellow mee noodles (mee), blanched
200g bee hoon dried rice vermicelli, scalded
300g water convolvulus, scalded
150g bean sprouts, scaled
The garnishings are equally important.
500g prawns, deveined, cooked and shelled
4 eggs, hard-boiled, shelled and quartered
1 fish cake, sliced
100g fried shallot crisps
How to prepare the Hokkien Mee stock
- In a wok, fry prawn shells and heads in hot oil till aromatic.
- Dish out and liquidize in a blender.
- In a stockpot, bring water and liquidized prawn shells and heads to boiling. Cover and simmer this stock for at least half an hour for full flavor.
- Strain this stock into a clean stockpot. Roughly chop the dried chilies, shallots, and garlic and blend into a paste.
- Heat oil in a wok to stir the spice paste until fragrant. Add chicken, chili paste and rock sugar to the stock and bring to a boil.
- Simmer over low heat for at least 15 minutes.
- Remove from heat.
- Cut chicken meat into slices to add to the topping.
To prepare chili paste
- Cut up the chilies and shallots roughly and blend to a fine paste.
- Heat oil and fry the ground chili paste ingredients over low heat until fragrant. Season to taste with salt and sugar.
- Set aside.
How To serve Hokkien Mee
- Place a portion of noodles, rice vermicelli, water convolvulus and bean sprouts in a bowl.
- Ladle hot stock over.
- Top with chicken slices, prawns, eggs, fish cake slices and sprinkle with shallot crisps.
- Serve while hot, with the chili paste.
Note: You may like to add anchovies (ikan bilis) and dried shrimp (hare bee) for added flavor.
888 Hokkien Mee Penang Opening Hours:
Lebuh Presgrave 888 Hokkien Mee | 67-A Lebuh Presgrave, George Town, Penang
(same road as Kwong Wah Yit Poh newspaper) Business Hours: 4:30 pm to 12:00 midnight daily (closed Thursdays)
If you fancy something more Atas, check out Gen 根 Modern Contemporary Restaurant across the street.