By midnight, my stomach was already grumbling. I couldn’t help but stop my work and go to the kitchen.
To my disappointment, shrimp roe noodles were out of stock. My negligence was to blame.
I bet that in a typical Hong Kong home, Spam and Nissin instant noodles are in constant supply to meet any hunger pangs.
In my castle, however, there should always be an abundant supply of shrimp roe noodles.
They’re more expensive than Nissin noodles. I have tried most brands but it’s hard to say which is the best.
Personally I love the ones made by a noodle factory near Triangle Street in Wan Chai.
Shrimp roe noodles, unlike instant noodles, do not come with any soup base powder or sesame oil.
Common ways of cooking include boiling the pasta in chicken broth or tossing it with oyster sauce.
Yet I’m not quite satisfied by either of them, and so I’ve come up with my own interpretation.
Here’s what I do: I boil the noodles till 70 percent done, drain them dry, and pan-fry with goose fat and dark soy sauce at medium fire.
It’s worth mentioning that goose fat is very healthy. I was told some time ago that in a rural village in France, the residents enjoy a longer-than-average lifespan on account of their fondness for goose fat.
Anyway, the combination of shrimp roe noodles and goose fat is simply invincible.
If time allows, I also fry some shallots and garlic before boiling the noodles, which are then added to the soy sauce.
Think that’s not good enough? You may want to add a generous splash of shrimp roe to the noodles before serving.
Shrimp roe is not cheap: It’s selling at HK$22 per tael at my favorite noodle factory.
On a recent trip to Macau I encountered some impressive shrimp roe noodle dough in a shop on Avenida de Almeida Ribeiro. A thick paste of roe topped the dried dough.
That makes the dough 100 percent made of roe, which makes it a real bargain, although these special edition noodles cost double the price of the original ones.
According to a worker at the shop, boiling the noodles would be good as it would fully dissolve the roe and bring out an intense soup base.
He reminded me not to waste a single drop of the noodle soup.
I stood there for a long time, asking myself whether I should give this one a try.
I finally decided to buy the regular ones instead. Why? Because I thought I wouldn’t always have the deluxe version, and I wouldn’t know what to do to satisfy my craving if I got used to something too good to be true.
This article appeared in the Hong Kong Economic Journal on Jan. 4.
Translation by Darlie Yiu
[Chinese version 中文版]
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