Mee Siam translates to "Siamese Noodle" in Malay. In Malaysia, it's the equivalent of the pad thai of Thailand, the fried rice of China, the sushi of Japan, the pizza of Italy, the hamburger of America. And as far as national dishes goes, with some extremely minor tweaks this can be made into a powerhouse dish with big delivery on protein and fiber, moderate and healthy sourced fats, and some alternate bases for vermicelli that are slightly more nutritionally beneficial than a plain white rice (small victories).
But first, our encounter with this dish... was in Wellington, New Zealand. While it wasn't our favorite city when visiting that great country, I have to say that the majority of our memorable meals where there. We came across a highly rated - one of the highest in the whole city according to Trip Advisor and Lonely Planet - place called Little Panang on 40 Dixon Street. We had been walking all day. Like, 30,938 steps long (truth, this is still on my health data app). And we just wanted some good food. It really didn't matter as long as there was no wait and no reservations necessary. G had never had Malaysian food. I had it before, but it had been awhile, and most Asian places in the U.S. are fusion... and you don't really know what authentically you're getting. If anything.
When we don't know what we're doing, we typically defer to the staff to tell us what is popular or what they like the most. And looking at us two white-ish girls with American accents... I'm sure they were offering the most basic, spiceless (for them), classic Malaysian dish on the menu. Indeed. No offense taken! And of course we loved it. With the mildest spice level they offer, we sucked down at least a liter of water each. LOL.
Of course, from the day we traveled back to the U.S., we were looking for ways to recreate our adventure at home, and dreaming of ways to just go live there forever. This dish never left our minds for a moment. We found a few recipes online that all sounded like they would result in the dish we had, our favorite being one where the sauce was entirely onion based - rather than cream or flour or any other heavy ingredient. And now, being gluten and dairy free, the recipe still fits in with our dietary needs without much tweaking. So then, the modify it to increase protein, decrease and/or change any unhealthy fats to good fats, and reduce overall carbohydrates was the easy part.
The recipe is coming at you in tomorrow's newsletter at 8am sharp! You can find the link on the homepage under the instagram section on the right side, at the top of the facebook page, or just click right here!
So the last thing I need to tell you is that finding all of the lesser known ingredients can be a little challenging if you're not familiar with the cuisine, language, or niche grocery store you've ventured in to find all of these bits and pieces. Do not despair. Along with the recipe, I will include an "Asian grocery store guide" which I would have absolutely LOVED when going into my local Super H Mart myself. It is likely that no one there will speak English well enough to help you. It's all part of the adventure! Once you have the few ingredients from there that you can't get anywhere else, they keep for a long time, so you can use them again and again in dishes that I will inevitably feature on Wednesdays right here!