Monday, January 10, 2011

Ipoh Hor Fun 怡保河粉 - "Malaysian Monday 24"

Ipoh is famous for many things; it's amazing caves, bean sprouts (yes mung bean sprouts!!), hor fun (rice noodles), lovely colonial buildings and beautiful women (Michele Yeoh being one of them). Apparently it's natural spring water plays a big role in it. We would go to Ipoh very regularly to visit relatives or simply to top up things that we couldn't get in the highlands, eating was a very big part of those visits of course. Ipoh hor fun was one those must have, being a greedy child it was hard to choose among all other wonderful food being offered then.
Another chilly night in Melbourne, bowls of homemade Ipoh hor fun should do the tricks for us. If you prefer the dry version check out my rice noodles with shredded chicken (雞絲河粉).
P.S This is a revamp of an early post I did when I first started my blog with step by step instructions.

makes 8 to 10 serves
you'll need;
1 free range chicken
1/2 kg of prawns
1 head of garlic
1 large onion, peeled
5 cm knob of ginger, bashed
2 tbs of rock sugar
4 l of water
white pepper and salt to taste
fresh thin rice noodles
bean sprouts
2 spring onion chopped
1/3 cup of cooking oil
1 head of garlic, chopped
3 tbs of hot chili flakes
1 tbs of sugar
salt to taste

Add onion, ginger, garlic to 4 l of water and when it comes to a boil add the chicken. When the water returns to a boil; put the lid on and turn off the heat, let the chicken steep in the hot broth for 3 hours.

After 3 hours; remove chicken from the pot and tear chicken into nice neat slivers. Discard the chicken skin but reserve the bones.

Bring the stock back to a boil and cook prawns for 3 to 5 minutes. Shell prawns and halve lengthwise, reserve the heads and shells.

To make the chili oil - Fry chopped garlic with 1/2 cup of cooking oil till golden, remove garlic and drain well. Add reserved prawns heads and shell and fry for 5 minutes, press the shells lightly with a masher, remove shells and set aside.

 Add chili flakes to the same pan and fry for a minute, add salt and sugar and remove from heat.

To finish the broth - add reserved chicken bones to the stock and simmer for 30 minutes then add the fried prawn shells and simmer for a further 20 minutes. It is ready when red oil starts to appear on the surface. Strain broth and check for seasonings.

We are ready to serve with everything now ready to assemble.

Blanch noodles and bean sprouts for 20 seconds, drain well and place in a large bowl.

Pour stock over and garnish with chicken, prawns, crispy garlic, spring onions and some of the chili oil. Mix well and enjoy!

My friend Sharon from Test With A Skewer will be hosting the first event of 2011. Please send all your  January entries to, to find out more about the event please click HERE


  1. Where are the hor fun , I can only see heaps of ingredients...LOL


    I wanna make this for dinner this week! Your stock looks awessssooooooooooommmeeee!

  3. yum yum sedap betul nampaknya .Minta semangkuk:)

  4. I haven't had this for years! I also want some right now!

  5. The sock must taste so good! Thanks for the new step by step post!

  6. Gosh, can't help salivating! Will definitely go for this when I'm home.

  7. LOL at the beautiful women comment, I was born in Ipoh :) I love hor fun, still never got around to making it myself. Did you ever visit that cofee shop in Ipoh with the famouse caramel custards? One of my favourite memories.

  8. Look at that prawn stock! I might have to try and make this as well....

  9. wow looks amazing as ever once we book flights will drop you a line? are you on facebook feel free to and me


  10. Hey buddy we are back! Have missed reading your blog. This is a very comforting noodle dish!

  11. Ou wow.....delicious!! I miss Ipoh food....

  12. Oh my goodness this looks so delicious! I will try making thus instead of pho over the weekend.

  13. that. That's so much goodness in that soup. Bet it's very delicious. Wish I can have a big bowl now!

  14. Oh I like this, looks so delicious!

  15. Very involved recipe, Mary, but it looks well worth the time!
    What fabulous photos...they are making me hungry!

  16. This is as close to perfect as a recipe can come. Your soup sounds delicious and it certainly is gorgeous to look at. A bowl of this would be well-worth the time it takes to make. I hope you are having a great day. Blessings...Mary

  17. That looks absolutely amazing. I would love to try that out sometime!

  18. I love hor fun and really wish I could have it right now!

  19. Delicious! Love all these Malaysian local food and to create them at home is challenging.

    I'm happy to follow your blog for more of all these yummy local food ideas...

  20. wow!! so beautiful and yummy!! I want a bowl too!! oh!! I want to enter the Muhibbah Monday for my kitchen blog but always forget! aisey!

  21. This looks like it takes a lot of time but looks very good.

  22. Oh yuM! yAYY... another recipe to bookmark.. I keep forgetting to use my Malaysian posts for MM.. REMIND ME!! Lols...

  23. Hey! Great recipe! What kind of prep did you do for the chicken? It was gutted, right? And do you have an estimate of how much salt to add to the stock? Also, did you use exactly 4L of water? Thanks!

  24. Nothing like Ipoh hor fun anywhere else in the world. Their taugeh is amazingly tasty!


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