Dry Noodles with Fish Balls

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Preparation info

  • Serves


    • Difficulty


Appears in

Chinese Heritage Cooking

Chinese Heritage Cooking

By Christopher Tan and Amy Van

Published 2018

  • About

Many food stalls selling this dish no longer add lard to the sauce mixture for health reasons. But if you only indulge once in a while, try it the old-fashioned way, as the lard adds immeasurable flavour. If you like, you can shape half the fish paste into patties, deep-fry them until golden, then slice them into the noodles, so there will be two different textures of fish balls.


  • Mee kia or mee pok 400 g (14⅓ oz)

Fish Balls

  • Fish paste
  • Salt 2 tsp
  • Lukewarm water 500 ml (16 fl oz / 2 cups)



  • Bean sprouts as desired, blanched for 3 seconds in boiling water and drained
  • Salted preserved cabbage (tung chai) as desired, rinsed, patted dry and chopped
  • Crispy lard cubes as desired
  • Chopped coriander leaves (cilantro) as desired
  • Chopped spring onions (scallions) as desired
  • Crisp-fried shallots as desired
  • Sliced red chillies or bird’s eye chillies as desired


  1. Make fish paste as for Foochow fish ball recipe up to the end of step 4. Bag and chill the fish paste for 30 minutes.
  2. Dissolve salt in lukewarm water in a wide, shallow bowl. Lightly oil your hands. Grab a handful of fish paste in one hand, then curl your thumb and forefinger to form a tight O shape and squeeze some paste through this to make a smooth, round ball about 2.5-cm (1-in) wide. Make all balls likewise. As you make them, place balls in the bowl of salted lukewarm water.
  3. Bring a large pot of water to a gentle simmer over medium heat. Add fish balls to water and cook for 6–8 minutes until fish balls float to the surface and are cooked through. Scoop out fish balls and transfer to a bowl of fresh warm water.
  4. Mix all ingredients for sauce together and set aside.
  5. Bring a pot of fresh water to a vigorous boil. Loosen noodles with your fingers to shake out any clumps, then blanch for 20–30 seconds or until done to your liking. Drain well and divide among serving bowls.
  6. Divide sauce mixture and fish balls among serving bowls and toss well with noodles to mix. Serve immediately with garnishes.