Teochew Mee Pok And Fish Ball Noodles (潮州肉脞面 ,潮州鱼圆面)



I was rather shocked that quite a lot of non Singaporean Facebook members do not know about mee pok, a type of flat noodle dish commonly found in the hawker centre selling  fish balls (鱼圆面) and minced meat noodles (bak chor mee (肉脞面)。 All this while even when i am in Kuching, Sarawak, I knew the existence of this flat noodles because in Kuching, we can even order kolo mee pok…However, I really can’t recall if I can order it in Kuala Lumpur.


As per Wikipedia:

“Mee pok is a noodle dish with Chinese noodle characterized by its flat and yellow appearance, varying in thickness and width. The dish is of Teochew origin and is commonly served in a number of countries such as Chaoshan (China), Singapore, Malaysia and Thailand. Mee Pok is commonly served tossed in a sauce (often referred to as “dry”, or tah in Hokkien (Pe̍h-ōe-jī: ta)), though sometimes served in a soup (where it is referred to as “soup”, or terng). Meat and vegetables are added on top. Mee pok can be categorised into two variants, fish ball mee pok (yu wan mee), and mushroom minced meat mee pok (bak chor mee). Bak chor mee is usually exclusively prepared using thin noodles (“mee kia”), while yu wan mee can be cooked with other noodle varieties. Mee pok is a staple commonly offered in hawker centres and coffee shops in Singapore, together with other Chinese noodle dishes.


The sauce in which the noodles are tossed in is a very important aspect of the dish, and is considered a representation of the cook’s skill and experience. The importance of the sauce in mee pok can be thought of similarly as the sauces that accompany pasta. The sauce consists of 4 components: chili, oil, vinegar and other condiments such as soy sauce and pepper. The chili is made from various ingredients and its preparation often includes frying and blending. Oil, traditionally lard, ensures a smooth texture in the noodles, although vegetable oil is sometimes used as a healthier though less tasty version. Vinegar is added for its sourness, and diners may specify how much vinegar is used.The chili sauce may be replaced with tomato ketchup for children, who are uncomfortable with the spiciness of the chili.” (Source: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mee_pok)


Well, this Teochew noodle dish is very common in Singapore, almost existing in any hawker centre’s and any food court’s stall. Both kids and adult love this fragrant dry noodle dish which is slightly tangy but aromatically flavoured by spring onion oil.


The recipe I am sharing today is rather traditional. As a respect to traditional cuisine, I have decided to prepare the dish using lard and lard cubes. Of course, all these can be substitute with other ingredients.. For this dish, there are many alternatives to the ingredients and when you ordered, you can always pick and choose.. As long as the sauce are the same, it will fall under this recipe. 


Though Wiki said that chilli is one of the important ingredients in the sauce, I will not share the recipe of chilli sauce. Among the reasons are not all diners can take hot and spicy mee pok and I do not think that original mee pok recipe in China have added chilli sauce. Secondly, almost every stall has different type of chilli sauce and there is none that is standardized.. Thirdly, it does not make much sense to prepare the chilli sauce just for a meal of 3-4 person. Usually, the chilli sauce in the store is prepared in bulk since the preparation is laborious. Therefore, I would advise readers to get the chilli  sauce from the supermarket or your own homemade chilli sauce.


For this illustration, i will share the traditional mee pok preparation whereas for picture taking, there are two sets of picture, one set for the traditional mee pok and another set for more “trendy” fish ball noodles with tomato sauce Tomato sauce is the recent trendy addition that is well liked by kids.




  • Some mee pok or mee kia
  • Some meat balls
  • Handful of pork lard cube (See below)
  • Some chopped spring onion
  • Some minced pork (seasons with sesame oil, white pepper, light soya sauce and sugar)
  • Some meat sliced thinly
  • Some pork liver (mixed with some corn starch and sesame oil)
  • Some lettuces

Note that as this is a savoury dish with many ingredients alternatives, as such, no detail measurements were given except the seasonings below.

For each bowl of noodles serving one person:

  • 2 tablespoons of spring onion oil (葱油)(see below);
  • 1 tablespoon of black vinegar (黑醋)
  • 1/2 tablespoon of fish sauce (鱼露)
  • 1/2 tablespoon of sesame paste (芝麻酱)- optional
  • 1 tablespoon of chilli sauce of your choice (辣椒酱)- optional
  • 1 tablespoon of tomato ketchup (番茄酱) – optional
  • Seasoning to taste (e.g. MSG, mushroom concentrate or sugar)
  • Dashes of white pepper




  • This step is the preparation of pork lard cubes and spring onion oil which is optional. You can always substitute with normal cooking oil. For this step, you will need some pork lard and chopped spring onions.

  • Cut the pork lard into almost the same size. Put the pork lard in a wok. Stir fry the cubes in every 2-3 minutes until all the oils are forced out and the lard cubes become brownish and crispy. It will take about 15-20 minutes depending on the quantity.  Drain and once cooled completely, the lard cubes have to be stored in an air tight container. The oil left is the lard.

  • To prepare the spring onion oil, chopped spring onion into fine pieces, add to the hot oil, stir fry until the spring onion become light brownish and aroma starts to emit. Off the heat and set aside. Note that the hot oil will continue to cook the chopped spring onion and hence it will become rather dark when it is cooled.


  • Get ready a bowl and put the fish sauce, sesame paste, black vinegar, spring onion oil, ketchup or chilli sauce and seasoning. Use a tablespoon and stir it until well combined.

  • In a pot with hot boiling water, blanch the noodles as per noodle packaging instructions. In this illustration, it was stated as 8 minutes. Drain the noodles and transfer it to the bowl with all the seasonings.


  • Use a pair of chopstick to quickly stir the noodles with the seasonings until well mixed. If it too dry, you can add in 1-2 tablespoon of meat broth of hot water.  Add some lettuce.

  • In another pot of hot boiling water, start blanching the ingredients in the following suggested order : bean sprout, meat slices, minced meat, meat dumpling, meat balls, pork liver.  If you are an experienced cook, you can blanch all these items together. The blanching for each item will take the most 2-3 minutes. Transfer the blanched items and place on top of the noodles. Add some pork lard cube, dashes of white pepper and chopped spring onions before serving. Best served hot with a ball of meat soup which is optional.


  • You can use the water for blanching the meat items, add some more vegetables or some more meat balls , seasonings and become a ball of hot soup to go with the noodles.


The same recipe shall apply to the fish ball noodles .. Noodles can be kway tiao or bee hoon or even bee tai bak. Garnishes can be fish balls, minced meat, fish balls slices, fish dumplings etc.



For this recipe, I purposely left out the detail quantity as there are too many choices of your ingredients be it the noodles items or the side ingredients. As long as you remember the seasoning recipe, it will provide you a delicious bowl of mee pok commonly sold in the hawker centre.. It is this sauce recipe that differentiate this humble bowl of uniquely Singapore hawker noodles dish with other noodle dishes..Do add or minus the suggested ingredients to tailor to your family’s taste buds.  If possible, try using pork lard and pork lard cubes and these 2 special items really create a difference in the aroma.


Hope you like the post today. Cheers




4 thoughts on “Teochew Mee Pok And Fish Ball Noodles (潮州肉脞面 ,潮州鱼圆面)

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