Shi Xian: Hearty plates of mee siam & mee rebus from $3, sells out by noon
Shi Xian is a hawker stall at 409 AMK Market & Food Centre that sells only 2 dishes: mee siam and mee rebus. Before my visit, I Googled its location and was surprised that the stall was actually located just a few blocks away from my house.
“How could I have not known about this stall?” I thought to myself.
After having a chat with the owner, I learnt that they have been in operation for close to 50 years. Their plates of noodles usually sell out by noon, thus they only cater to the breakfast and early lunch crowd.
I then knew the reason why I hadn’t noticed them (I usually visit this hawker centre only in the evenings).
The menu was straightforward— S$3 (small) and S$3.50 (large) for both dishes.
What I tried at Shi Xian
I started my sleepy morning (yawns) with the Mee Rebus (S$3). My plate consisted of a bed of yellow noodles which was doused in the standard gooey brown gravy.
It was topped with sliced boiled egg, tau geh, tau pok, dried shrimp, slices of green chilli, a halved calamansi, a sprinkling of spring onions and a dollop of sambal by the side.
I tossed everything and at that moment, I appreciated that they weren’t stingy with the gravy. It was more than sufficient to coat every single element of the dish.
The viscous gravy was perfectly seasoned but the taste was what you’d typically expect from a plate of mee rebus— it was good, but not mind-blowing.
The softness of the noodles was complemented by the crunchiness of the tau geh.
I underestimated the paper-thin pieces of crispy dried shrimp. Though small in size, they packed a ton of smokey umami-ness which was released in full swing as soon as my teeth bit on it.
After finishing the mee rebus, I realised that I hadn’t touched the sambal at all— I guess my hunger got the better of me.
I proceeded with the next dish, the Mee Siam (S$3). Similar to the previous dish, the plate had identical ingredients except for the bee hoon and gravy.
To my astonishment, the full-bodied broth for the Mee Siam had intense coconutty notes which was new to me. It was also much lighter than the usual ones I’ve had before.
The fine strands of bee hoon were the perfect vessels to absorb the flavourful gravy. Every mouthful had mini gushes of addictive deliciousness, and I found myself slurping it non-stop.
Drizzling the golden drops from the calamansi instantly transformed the plate of mee siam into an exuberant work of art, which allowed me to explore a totally different side to it.
The sambal (this time I remembered) was chunky due to the addition of crushed peanuts, which I found to be rather interesting. The spice gradually crept up like the tortoise in the race— slowly but surely!
Besides the good taste, the service at Shi Xian was also warm and welcoming. Although the stall only offers 2 dishes, they concentrate on quality and execute them with such finesse.
Sometimes, less is more. I’m definitely adding them to my go-to list!
Expected damage: S$3 – S$3.50 per pax
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