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Singapore Lor Mee (Braised Pork Noodles)

Noodles. A thick, rich, savoury gravy. A mish-mash of wondrous toppings that add to the already immense vibe. This, my friend, is lor mee, a Chinese Hokkien dish that restores your soul, warms your heart and delivers pure joy. Go on. You deserve it.


Singapore Lor Mee (Braised Pork Noodles)

20 minutes
1 hour

400g (14 oz) fresh hokkien noodles

6 dried shiitake mushrooms

1 cup bean shoots (beansprouts), to serve

4 fish cakes, sliced (optional)

½ cup roughly chopped coriander (cilantro), to serve (optional)

4 garlic cloves, finely chopped, to serve (optional)

1 long red chilli, finely sliced, to serve (optional)

sambal oelek, to serve (optional)

Chinese black vinegar (chinkiang vinegar), to serve (optional)

2 soft boiled eggs, to serve (optional)


Braised pork:

1kg (2 lb 3 oz) pork belly

40g (1.5 oz) ginger, sliced

2 cinnamon sticks

3 whole star anise

1 tsp Chinese five spice

4 tbsp Chinese light soy sauce

3 tbsp Chinese dark soy sauce

3 tbsp oyster sauce

1 tbsp white sugar

½ tsp ground white pepper

80g (3 oz) tapioca flour, mixed with 100ml (3.5 fl oz) water


Crispy fried fish:

200g (7 oz) white fish fillet, halved

½ cup cornflour (cornstarch)

2 eggs, lightly beaten

vegetable oil, for deep-frying

  • Step 1

    Soak the shiitake mushrooms in hot water for 10 minutes or until soft and tender. Drain the mushrooms, making sure to reserve the soaking liquid). Cut off and discard the stems from the mushrooms, then slice. Set aside for later.

  • Step 2

    To prepare the pork belly, slice into 4cm (1½ inch) strips. Use a sharp knife to remove the skin (watch the video for a nifty technique for doing this). Then slice the skinless pork belly strips into 2cm-wide (just under 1 inch) strips. Then cut those strips into small chunks (we’re essentially making rather large ‘lardons’ of pork belly).

  • Step 3

    Bring 2 litres (2.1 qt) of water to the boil in a large pot over high heat. Then turn the heat down to medium. Add the pork belly, shiitake mushrooms and reserved soaking liquid, ginger, cinnamon sticks, star anise, five spice, soy sauces, oyster sauce, sugar and pepper. Bring to a gentle simmer and then reduce the heat to low. Cook for 45 minutes or until the pork is tender (use a ladle to skim the surface of the braising liquid every so often while it simmers).

  • Step 4

    Pour the tapioca starch mixture into the braised pork. Simmer, stirring, for a further 2 minutes or until a thick gravy-like sauce forms.

  • Step 5

    In the meantime, fill a saucepan or wok to about one-third capacity with the vegetable oil. Heat over high heat until the oil is hot (165°C/330°F, or when a wooden spoon dipped into the oil forms small bubbles). When the oil is hot, coat each piece of fish in the cornflour, then into the egg and then back into the cornflour. Add the pieces into the oil and cook for 3-4 minutes or until crisp and cooked through. Drain on paper towel, then roughly chop. Set aside for later.

  • Step 6

    When ready to serve, heat a large pot of water over high heat. Cook the noodles according to packet instructions and use tongs to transfer and divide among serving bowls. In the same noodle cooking water, add in the bean shoots and cook for 2 minutes or until just soft. Drain those and set aside in a bowl. Now add in the fish cake slices and cook those in the boiling water until just warmed through. Drain and set aside.

  • Step 7

    Top the noodles with generous ladles of the thick pork gravy. Top with the crispy fish, warmed fish cake slices and blanched bean shoots. Now you can add your optional toppings including coriander, garlic, chilli, sambal oelek, a drizzle of black vinegar and/or an egg. Serve immediately.

Marion's Kitchen is for everyone who finds joy in flavour and happiness in every bite. Marion's Kitchen is for everyone who finds joy in flavour and happiness in every bite.

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