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Curry Mee

Curry noodles Penang style differs from what you would find in other parts of Malaysia (which is generally known as Curry Laksa). It is generally less “lemak” (rich), or a lighter version of the region’s coconut-milk based curries. Its aromatic broth is soupier and less viscous than what non-Penangites consider Curry Laksa. This dish is of Chinese heritage and you will be hard pressed to find a halal version of this offering.

Each stall in Penang will have its own interpretation of curry mee, with the key distinction in its curry broth and chilli paste. The ingredients of Penang Curry Mee will also vary from stall to stall, nevertheless you generally find that it will have bean sprouts, soybean puffs, shelled prawns, cockles, cubed coagulated pig’s blood and cuttlefish, which is served up with your choice of noodle. Occasionally, it may also be served with sliced chicken, fish balls and fish cake. More exotic add ons such as gizzard and chicken feet come with a small premium. Locals generally order this dish with half-and-half of yellow egg noodles (mee) and rice vermicelli (beehoon). The garnishing to the curry mee is mint leaves and a generous dollop of chilli paste.

When served the dish looks a very tame version of curry. However, before tucking into the dish, the chilli paste is stirred into the whitish milky broth, transforming the soup into a fiery red hue which gives it its spiciness and fragrance. So if you would like less of a burn, it is recommended that less chilli paste is stirred into the noodles and broth, but do not skip it completely as the noodles will lose some of its characteristic flavor. Expect to pay RM2.00-3.00 for a standard bowl of curry mee.

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