Mee rebus

Mee rebus

Leanne Kitchen

Mee rebus translates as ‘boiled noodles’, and is a popular dish in Singapore and Malaysia. With its complex sauce based on sweet potato, it’s a gutsy dish, and is sometimes made with beef. The beauty of it is all the myriad accompaniments – tofu, hard-boiled eggs and chilli. There are no set rules here; just put the lot in the middle of the table and get your family or guests to help themselves.


Quantity Ingredient
800g orange sweet potatoes, peeled and chopped
2 tablespoons vegetable oil
1.5 litres Chicken stock
80ml yellow bean sauce
2 tablespoons light soy sauce
125ml coconut milk
60g palm sugar, shaved
2 tablespoons potato starch
400g bean sprouts
840g fresh thin yellow egg noodles


Quantity Ingredient
2 1/2 tablespoons dried shrimp
8-10 large dried red chillies, soaked in boiling water for 30 minutes, drained
6 garlic cloves, chopped
4 red asian shallots, chopped
2 lemongrass stems, chopped, white part only
5 cm piece fresh galangal, chopped
8 candlenuts
2 teaspoons malaysian curry powder

To serve

Quantity Ingredient
10 fried tofu puffs, sliced
6 eggs, hard-boiled and halved
2-3 red bird’s eye chillies, thinly sliced
Chilli sambal


  1. For the paste, finely grind the dried shrimp in an electric spice grinder. Transfer to a food processor with the remaining paste ingredients and process until smooth. Alternatively, use a mortar and pestle.
  2. Meanwhile, cook the sweet potatoes in boiling water for about 12 minutes or until tender. Drain well. Transfer to a food processor or blender and process until smooth.
  3. In a large saucepan over medium heat, cook the paste in the oil, stirring, for 3 minutes or until fragrant. Stir in the sweet potato, stock, soy bean sauce, soy sauce, coconut milk and palm sugar and bring to a simmer. Cover and cook over low heat for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally. Season to taste with salt and freshly ground black pepper.
  4. Combine the potato starch with 60 ml water to make a smooth paste. Stirring constantly, add it to the sauce and cook, stirring, until it simmers and thickens.
  5. Bring a large saucepan of water to the boil. Add the bean sprouts and cook for 1 minute or until softened. Transfer to a bowl using a slotted spoon.
  6. Return the water in the saucepan to the boil, add the noodles and cook for 3 minutes, or according to the packet instructions, until tender. Drain well.
  7. Divide the noodles among large bowls and ladle the sauce over. Divide the sprouts, tofu puffs and eggs among the bowls, scatter over the red chillies and serve with the chilli sambal on the side.
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