We eat bun mein once or twice a month because there's a very good bun mein shop nearby. Bun mein seems more healthier and nutritious than say, konlo mee which is 90% carbs and 10%pork oil, meat and msg (unbelievable amount of msg) whereas bun mein hardly has oil and there's a good mix of meat and sayur manis.
So what makes a good bun mein?For me, the soup should be light (although some prefer pork bones soup) but tasty, the mein should be torn into pieces and not in long strands like other mein, and it should be el dente and slippery smooth. There should be a good sprinkle of crispy ikan bilis/anchovies and, very importantly, there should be a dip of calamansi lime, bird's eye chilies and chopped raw garlic. Most important of all, the veg must be sayur manis, nothing else. Agree?
Making bun mein at home is a little bit of a hassle. For best results, make your dough in advance and have all the ingredients lined up by your stove. Bun mein's only good if you cook it bowl by bowl because the mein is not rinsed in cold water as you would other noodles, and you want to cook everything quickly in high heat. So let's start.
Making the Dough
150g Blue Horse flour (or wheat flour)
1.Put flour into a machine mixing bowl, add 1/2 cup water and knead (I usually use my mixer if I make larger portions). If too wet, add more flour; too dry, add more water. You want an el dente bite so make the dough harder.
2.When dough is smooth, cover and let it rest. Just before you start to cook, dust the working surface, divide dough equally into 2 portions and roll each piece of dough out thinly or to your desired thickness.
The Other Ingredients
a large handful of sayur manis
100g (more or less)thin pork slices
--marinade pork in salt, white pepper and lots of cornflour + water, leave in fridge overnight
combination of: pork balls, pork liver slices, egg pork roll
2 T crispy fried ikan bilis
1 T dried cloud ears, soaked and sliced into thin strips
1/2 chicken stock cube or chicken/pork stock
bird's eye chilies, minced
1. In a small, thin-base metal pot, add 2 cups water (or pork/chicken stock) and 1/4 of a chicken stock cube and 1/3 t salt, a dash of white pepper. Add the meatballs.
2. When soup boils, add the pork slices and clouds' ears. Stir well, and when soup comes to a full boil, tear off 4 or 5 cm square (roughly) pieces of the dough and drop into the boiling soup. The heat must be very high. Work quickly. Add the liver slices in between (too early and they get tough, too late they aren't cooked through). Stir well all the time. Lastly add the veg in and pour into a noodle bowl, top with 1 T of ikan bilis. Serve with the dip. Get ready some tissues.
Makes 2 large servings.