Ngoh Hiang

Rate this recipe


Preparation info

  • Makes


    • Difficulty


Appears in

Chinese Heritage Cooking

Chinese Heritage Cooking

By Christopher Tan and Amy Van

Published 2018

  • About

The name of this dish is derived from the Chinese five-spice powder that gives the rolls their distinctive flavour and aroma. The Teochew version emphasises the flavours and textures of the prawns, water chestnuts and taro, unlike Hokkien ngoh hiang, which has a meatier savour. The rolls can be shaped and steamed ahead of time and kept in the freezer.


  • Prawns (shrimps) 200 g (7 oz)
  • Peeled taro 150 g (5⅓ oz)
  • Minced pork 300 g (11 oz)
  • Onion 60 g ( oz), peeled and finely chopped
  • Spring onions (scallions) 2, finely chopped
  • Garlic 3 cloves, peeled and finely chopped
  • Egg 1, beaten
  • Cornflour (cornstarch) 1 tsp
  • Five-spice powder 1 tsp
  • Sugar 1 tsp
  • Salt to taste
  • Ground white pepper to taste
  • Sesame oil 1 tsp
  • Water chestnuts 4, peeled and finely diced
  • Dried bean curd skin 5 sheets, each about 22 × 15-cm (8½ × 6-in)
  • Cooking oil for deep-frying
  • Sweet sauce as desired


  1. Peel prawns. (Freeze shells and heads for use in stocks, if desired.) Slit prawns along their backs and remove thread-like black intestines. Rinse prawns well, pat dry and chop.
  2. Steam taro over high heat until just tender, then let cool slightly. Break it up into fine crumbs with a fork while still warm, then let cool completely.
  3. Combine prawns with minced pork, onion, spring onions and garlic. Mix egg, cornflour, five-spice powder, sugar, salt, pepper and sesame oil and stir until combined, then fold in water chestnuts and taro until evenly mixed in.
  4. Wipe a bean curd sheet with a clean, damp tea towel and lay it on a flat surface. Spoon one-fifth of the prawn and pork mixture near the edge of the skin, shaping it into a neat log. Roll it up one turn and fold the left and right sides of the sheet in, then roll all the way up. If necessary, dampen the edge lightly to help it seal. Make all ngoh hiang likewise.
  5. Place rolls on a lightly oiled heatproof dish, seams down. Steam for 12–15 minutes over medium heat or until cooked through. Drain off any liquid in the dish and let rolls cool completely. The rolls can now be deep-fried for serving or cooled, wrapped and kept in the freezer. Thaw frozen rolls before deep-frying.
  6. To deep-fry, heat oil for deep-frying in a wok over medium-high heat until a light haze forms above it. Gently lower the rolls into the oil—do not fry more than two at a time, for the best results. Deep-fry rolls for 3–5 minutes, until golden brown. Drain well on paper towels. Slice and serve with sweet sauce on the side.