The debut dish on Dreamshop is his “dream Hokkien Mee”. From the get-go, Jeremy and his team found making the stock for it a huge challenge. “The stock is very expensive and time-consuming. It takes 16 hours in total, just to make the stocks,” he explains. Instead of the usual one, Jeremy’s dish utilises two stocks: prawn and pork. To make the former, he roasts tiger prawn heads, boil them in water for several hours, and then blitzes the mixture to a pulp before boiling it again to thoroughly extract all the flavour from the crustaceans. The pork stock is made Japanese tonkotsu-style where trotters are brought to a rolling boil for six hours to break down their collagen and yield a milky broth. Jeremy only uses hormone-free probiotic pork from Canada. “Half a litre of stock goes into one portion of the noodles, which feeds about three to four people,” he adds.
Instead of traditional yellow noodles, whose strong alkaline flavour he does not enjoy, Jeremy uses firm Sanuki udon and thin bee hoon. These noodles are braised in the combined stocks with lots of lard and some garlic, and later topped with tiger prawns, clams, and slices of the hormone-free probiotic Canadian pork belly.
The result, when we try the dish, is heavy with the flavour of pork, which drowns out the sweetness of the prawns. When we mention this to Jeremy, he gamely says that in his next iteration, he will tweak the recipe to make the prawn flavour more pronounced. We liked that he uses the slippery udon, which eliminates the “kee” or alkaline flavour of traditional yellow wheat noodles. Each packet of Hokkien mee comes with a bottle of Batu Lesung Spice Company Sambal Belacan, which unlike most of its ilk, is gentle on the fermented prawn paste so that its flavour is clean and sharp. Pictured above is the half portion that comes with ngoh hiang or chicken wings for $45 (feeds two pax). The $60 one feeds three generously, perhaps four people with more modest appetites.