Penang Prawn Noodles

After saving the prawn shells in the freezer for months, I've finally decided that it's time to use them to make prawn noodles. This is also part of my plan of clearing out ingredients before leaving Singapore.

Cooking the Penang prawn noodles (aka Penang Hokkien Mee) is quite a lengthy process. I wanted to have it for lunch on Sunday, but I've already started to cook since Saturday night. Preparing for sambal paste and prawn stock took about 4 hours, but after this part is done, the rest was quite easy and I had a bowl of yummy prawn noodles to savor on Sunday afternoon.

Did you notice that there is only rice vermicelli in my version of prawn noodles? Well, the real deal would have yellow noodles in it. But since yellow noodle is one of my least favourite food on earth, I find it more enjoyable to have a bowl of prawn noodles (or should I change the name to Penang prawn vermicelli?) without the yellow and soggy stuff.

On a side note, I've been telling everyone I know that this is probably the most expensive prawn noodles I've ever eaten in my life. Well, you see, one of my fingers was pricked by a prawn head when I was rinsing the shells. I did not take notice initially but the wound has swollen with pus the next day. I tried to drain the pus myself with a silly method (don't ask me what I've done) and the wound got worsen. In the end, I had no choice but to seek for medical treatment and the bill cost me a hefty $38, sigh!

Penang Prawn Noodles Recipe
(Adapted from Famous Cuisine magazine, issue 36)

Sambal Paste

30g dried chilli, soaked until soft
10 shallots
5 garlic cloves
30g dried shrimps, soaked
6 candlenuts
1 cup oil

1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tbs sugar

1) Pound all ingredients with mortar and pestle or in a blender until fine.
2) Heat up the oil in a wok, stir-fry the pounded ingredients over low heat.
3) Add in seasoning, continue to stir-fry briskly until fragrant, or until the chilli oil is separated. Dish up and ready to be used.

Prawn Broth

2 pcs whole chicken carcasses
150g dried anchovy (ikan bilis)
500-800g prawn's shell
5 tbs home make sambal paste
5L water

1 tbs salt
30g rock sugar
1 tbs chicken stock granule

1) Rinse the whole chicken carcasses and dried anchovy. Cook in a deep pot with water. Bring to boil, reduce to low heat, and then cook for 1 hour.
2) Stir-fried prawn's shells with 2-3 tbs sambal paste. Remove from wok and place into the pot of chicken stock, bring to boil. Reduce to low heat and simmer for further 1.5-2 hours until fragrant.
3) Lastly, add in seasoning and 5 tbs of sambal paste, stir well and cook for another 20 minutes.

Prawn Noodles

1.5kg medium prawns
500g yellow noodles
(Note: my prawn noodles did not have yellow noodles at all)
500g rice vermicelli, soaked
150g kangkong (water convolvulus)
100g beansprouts
300g lean pork
4 hard-boiled eggs, shelled and sliced
Some fried shallot slices

1) Rinse the prawns. Remove the shell which are then used for the prawn stock.
(Note: I copied this step directly from magazine. However, I did not use the shells from "1.5kg of prawns" but I used the prawn shells which I've saved for a period of time instead. Then I only used about 500g of prawn flesh and some of which can be seen in the picture above. If you do not have any prawn shells on hand, you can follow this step directly)
Blanch the shelled prawn into boiling water until cooked, dish out.
2) Heat up 2 tbs of sambal chilli oil (from sambal paste), add in shelled prawns and 1 tbs sugar, stir-fry briskly until fragrant and slightly dry. Remove, leave to cool.
3) Cook the lean pork in prawn broth until done, dish out and cut into slices.
4) Blanch yellow noodles, rice vermicelli, kangkung and beansprouts in boiling water separately. Remove and drained. Serve with prawn stock, pork slices, prawn flesh and egg slices. Sprinkle some fried shallots on the noodle and serve with sambal paste.


daphne said…
ouch! Hope your finger is better now??

I like my prawn noodles with bee hoon too..instead of the yellow noodles..and with lots of chili!
didally said…
I've saved up quite an amount of prawn shells in the freezer. Hee.. hoping they will come into good use. I prefer thick bee hoon for my prawn noodles.

This recipe serves about 5 to 6?

Hope your finger is ok now. I got pricked before but was only a minor cut.
Su-yin said…
I came across your blog yesterday, and I already LOVE it! Being from Penang myself, there's nothing better than being greeted with the sight of Hokkien Mee! (Though I'm having a really bad craving now). I normally just cook it using Hup Loong's prawn mee mix as I'm studying in London, can't get the real thing!.

But as I was saying, I'm really impressed by your blog (and the amazing photos), will definitely be looking through your previous posts in the next few days.

Hope your finger is better!

Piggy said…
Hi Daphne,

Prawn noodle taste better with bee hoon, isnt' it? heehee.... My finger is ok now. thanks. :-)

Hi Eugenia,

When I order prawn noodles in SG, I always choose thick bee hoon as well. But the prawn noodles in Penang are usually served with thin bee hoon and yellow noodles.

Yes, the recipe is enough for 5 persons. Give it a try then. :-)

Hi Su-yin,

Thanks for dropping by my blog! Glad to know you're also from Penang. :-D
sedap leh! too bad i am too late to q for a bowl.

and guess what I dislike those yellow noddle so my prawn noodle also comes with bee hoon.

and boy that is definitely a very expensive bowl of prawn noodle. LOL. I hope your finger is okay now.
eliza said…
it looks very delicious indeed!
Ms Rabbit said…
Whaha... I bet the doctor fell off his chair when u left. Hee...

But it's certainly worth it! Looks tempting!!
Looking at your prawn mee make me so hungry:)so many "liu".Really respect you gone thru all the process of making prawn mee.I also like my noodle soup with mee hoon only .
Ouch. You injured yourself?
Anyway, the prawn noodles looks nice! It gives me very good impression if compare to outside one=)
Y said…
Oh I could really go for a bowl of that right now. Sorry to hear about your finger though - I've had prawn related cuts before, but didn't realise they could get worse!