I’m not a huge fan of mee soto, which is a spicy noodle soup usually cooked with chicken. There are also many other variations. Wikipedia gives a quick summary. The mee soto that is commonly found in food courts in Singapore is usually too salty and laden with MSG. I often have to drink tonnes of water to quench my thirst after having a bowl of this stuff. The flavor is also very mediocre. However, I am a HUGE fan of the mee soto my friend’s mother makes. Honestly, it’s in a class of its own and it’s the ONLY mee soto I eat now, that is until she taught me how to make it. The secret is the particular spice mix she uses. Unfortunately, the spice mix is hard to find in Singapore, and sadly contains MSG. But, for some unknown reason, I’ve never felt super thirsty after eating this mee soto, so I presume the amount of MSG in the mix is minimal. Every time I go home, I always ask my friend to help me buy a few packets of this spice mix. Her mom will also lovingly make mee soto for me – and hers is still the best!
Recently, I made this mee soto with a bunch of Singaporean friends. They all enjoyed it. I also made bergedils to go with the mee soto – yum! The recipe below is specific for the spice mix given to me. However, I am sure you can use any other mee soto spice mix with this recipe. The taste will probably differ though.
I also found this recipe for homemade mee soto, sans the spice packet. I might try it one day when I run out of the mee soto spice.
Lina’s Mom’s Mee Soto
(Source: Lina’s amazing mom)
For the chili padi sauce:
- 250g bird’s eye chillies or any amount you would like
- Kecap Manis (sweet black sauce), to desired sauce/chili ratio
Blend these ingredients together in a food processor.
For the soup:
To make the rempah paste, blend together in a food processor:
- 5 big red chillies, deseeded (we don’t really have these here in the US, so you can use either bird’s eye chillies, Serrano chili or jalapenos)
- 10 large shallots
- 3 whole candlenuts
- 3 cloves garlic
- 2 stalks lemongrass, smash the root ends to release flavor
- 1 cinnamon stick
- 1 packet of Kak Zah spice
- 1 whole chicken (about 1.5kg), cut into pieces. You can also use equivalent of thighs, breast meat, etc.
- Some beef (optional)
- Boiled macaroni or yellow noodles
- Cilantro, for garnish (optional)
- Fried shallots, for garnish (optional)
- Salt, to taste
- Fry cinnamon stick and lemongrass, till cinnamon stick opens up
- Add the rempah paste. Fry till fragrant and golden brown
- Add the Kak Zah spice, add a little water, and boil till layer of oil appears (oil separates from solids).
- Add chicken and enough water to just cover chicken. You can also add some beef, if desired.
- Bring to boil and then simmer till chicken is cooked. Season with salt.
- Serve with yellow noodles or macaroni. Garnish with cilantro and fried shallots, if desired.