Shrimp Broth with Noodles and Pork

Prawn Mee


Preparation info

  • Difficulty


  • Makes

    4 to 6

    bowls as a one-dish meal

Appears in

Southeast Asian Flavors: Adventures in Cooking the Foods of Thailand, Vietnam, Malaysia & Singapore

Southeast Asian Flavors

By Robert Danhi

Published 2008

  • About

This dish is all about the shrimp, or as they call them in Malaysia and Singapore the “prawns.” Combining pork and shrimp in a single dish is very common in Asia. For this recipe, using the freshest head-on shrimp is critical. When made right, a rich shrimp essence come through, the soup acquires a characteristic red-orange color. Though it’s red, it’s not a spicy as it looks — that’s what the side dish of fiery sambal belacan is for.


  • 3 lbs. (1.3 kg.) Pork Ribs/Bones, 2 to 3-inch (7.5 cm.) pieces
  • ½ lb. (227 g.) Pork Leg or loin, 2 × 1 × 4-inch piece (5 × 2.5 × 10 cm.)
  • 2 lbs. (.9 kg.) Medium Shrimp, head on
  • ½ cup (½ oz/14 g.) Dried red chilies, remove stems and seeds
  • ¼ cup Vegetable oil (divided use)
  • 4 medium Shallots, roughly chopped
  • 6 cloves Garlic, roughly chopped
  • 1 Tbsp. finely grated ginger
  • 2 stalks Lemongrass, trimmed and bruised
  • 2 tsp. Kosher salt
  • 2 tsp. Granulated sugar
  • ½ lb. (227 g.) (229 g.) Chinese greens such as Choy Sum
  • 1 lb. (454 g.)(457 g.) Wheat Noodles, fully cooked and cooled
  • 1 cup (229 g.) Bean Sprouts, trimmed and blanched
  • 3 Tbsp. Fried shallots
  • 2 to 3 medium Limes, cut into Southeast Asian style wedges—Calamansi or Key if available
  • ¼ cup Sambal Belacan


  1. Make pork stock: Combine pork ribs with 1 gallon of water. Bring to a boil; lower heat and simmer for 1 hour.
  2. Cook and slice the pork leg: Lower the pork leg or loin into stock, and simmer until it is cooked through, about 20 minutes. Remove the pork from the stock, and plunge it into ice water for 10 minutes. Transfer to a cutting board, and slice into -inch (0.3 cm.) thick slices; cover and reserve. Strain stock.
  3. Peel and clean the shrimp, saving the heads and shells for broth. Soak dried chilies in ¾ cup of room temperature water for 30 minutes, drain and squeeze out excess moisture.
  4. Make the broth: In a blender, make a rempah by pureeing the first 2 tablespoons of the oil, shallots, garlic, ginger, and chilies. Heat a 4 qt. (4 L.) saucepan with remaining 2 tablespoons of the oil, add the shrimp shells and cook until color changes to a bright orange. Add puree (rempah) and cook over medium-low heat for 5 to 10 minutes, until the raw aroma dissipates. Add strained stock, lemongrass, salt and sugar and simmer for 15 minutes.
  5. Puree and strain broth: Carefully transfer about half of the mixture, shells and all, to a blender. Puree well, and then add back to simmering pot; continue to cook for 10 minutes more. Strain this mixture: it should yield qt. (2.5 L.) of liquid. If there is less than that, add water to achieve that volume. Adjust seasoning with salt to taste.
  6. Blanch whole bunches of choy sum in boiling water; remove from water with a slotted spoon or skimmer, squeeze dry, and cut into 2 to 3-inch (5 to .75 cm.) lengths. Keep water boiling for later use.
  7. To serve: Bring shrimp broth to a simmer. Cook shrimp lightly in the simmering broth, remove and set aside. Reheat noodles in boiling water, drain well and divide among 6 bowls. Ladle simmering broth over the noodles. On top of noodles, arrange sliced pork, greens, bean sprouts, and shrimp Sprinkle with shallots, and serve with lime wedges and sambal on the side.