Yes, we ripped this idea off JB Ah Meng, that unapologetically gritty zi char restaurant in Geylang. It’s so simple, it’s genius. By re-frying the bee hoon with a bit of oil (less than what the stall uses) and patting it down in the skillet, you get a wonderfully crispy treat that will make you wish you’d thought of this earlier.
Serves 2 to 4
150g bee hoon (soaked in tap water for 10 minutes)
2 cloves garlic, chopped
3/4 cup fresh prawns and squids, cut into small pieces
½ tsp salt
½ tsp ground white pepper
4 tbsp dark soy sauce
1 tbsp oyster sauce
For the garnish:
sliced red chillies
fresh coriander leaves
1. Heat 2 tbsp oil in a wok. Fry the garlic till fragrant, then add the prawns, squid, salt and pepper. Stir-fry for a minute or so, until the seafood is just cooked.
2. Drain the beehoon and add to the skillet with the soy sauce and oyster sauce. Stir-fry till the bee hoon is evenly coated with all the ingredients. If it starts to dry out, add a little water. Taste and add more salt, if necessary. Set aside.
3. Heat 3 tbsp oil in a clean non-stick skillet until the surface starts to shimmer slightly.
4. Add the bee hoon to the skillet and spread it out to form a “pancake”.
5. Using a spatula, flatten the bee hoon pancake against the base of the skillet to help the bottom of the pancake crisp up. Cook for about four minutes, lifting the edges to check that they are burnished and crisp.
6. Place a plate above the pan and flip it over so that the beehoon pancake now sits on the plate.
7. Carefully slip the pancake from the plate back onto the pan so that the un-crisped side faces the base of the skillet. Fry for another three to four minutes until slightly browned and crisp.
8. Slide the bee hoon pancake onto a serving plate and garnish with sliced red chillies, coriander leaves and some sambal, if desired. Serve immediately.