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Soong Kee Beef Noodle & Lao You Ji Porridge: Special minced meat dry noodles with hearty beef innards soup by 2nd-Gen hawker

Hey hey hey… guess what? It’s my first food review from neighbouring Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia— I’m so stoked! I made the journey to Soong Kee Beef Noodle & Lau You Ji Porridge on Jalan Tun Hau Shik Lee located right at the city centre.

soong kee - stall front
soong kee - stall front

Running a business is certainly not easy. Some manage to keep it afloat for a few years while others come and go in an instant. So, I was remarkably impressed when I saw the sign that stated ‘Since 1945’— that makes them 78 years old (clapping hands) in 2023.

soong kee - hawker cooking
soong kee - hawker cooking

I had a front row view of the chefs working their magic in the open kitchen at the back of the restaurant. The beautiful yellow strands of noodles were steeped in a cauldron of boiling water before they were rescued in mid-air. Next, they were showered with a cold pail of water to get them nice and springy.

What I tried at Soong Kee Beef Noodle & Lau You Ji Porridge

soong kee - tripe noodles
soong kee - tripe noodles

I ordered the Tripe Beef Noodles (RM10). The bed of noodles was doused in a minced meat mixture, and served with you mai cai. There was a separate bowl of beef slices, tripe, stomach and beef balls served in a clear soup.

Before I started on the broth, I had the impression that it would be rather dull. After sipping on my first spoonful, I found it to be surprisingly light, but it still managed to retain all the natural sweetness and flavours of the beef.

soong kee - soup
soong kee - soup

The innards were the epitome of quality execution. I’m sure you’ve encountered funky-tasting intestines or tripe at least once in your life. If you haven’t, believe me, it’s definitely not pleasant!

The beef stomach and tripe here tasted extremely fresh and clean, and possessed the perfect texture and mouthfeel. I found out that the beef balls are freshly-made every morning, which explained their full-bodied piquancy. It’s the other end of the spectrum compared to factory-made ones.

soong kee - soup
soong kee - soup

My least favourite were the beef slices. Although they were extremely soft and smooth, each piece felt a little artificial to me. Now, I’m not sure if this is true but, according to my dad, some hawkers add copious amounts of tenderiser to pork slices to mimic venison. These beef slices reminded me of them, with their slippery surfaces and tender flesh.

Beef parts dipped in the homemade chilli packed a punch, and I definitely recommend eating them this way.

The noodles reminded me of stir-fried Hong Kong noodles that I usually get at zi char stalls back in Singapore. The texture was great, but the alkaline taste was a little on the strong side.

soong kee - noodles
soong kee - noodles

The minced meat on the noodle surface was intensely dark, and looked burnt at first glance. Nothing could’ve prepared me for the intense aromatic sensations that encapsulated my taste buds when I took my first bite.

I discovered that the minced meat was actually a combination of 2 meats (pork and beef). Beef essence was slathered onto the mixture to intensify the flavour, which explained why it was so delicious.

soong kee - noodles chilli sauce
soong kee - noodles chilli sauce

Adding the chilli sauce into the noodles reduced the alkaline taste just a little, and took me on a different journey altogether.

Final thoughts

soong kee - hawker view
soong kee - hawker view

Witnessing the continuation of a legacy happening at Soong Kee Beef Noodle & Lao You Ji Porridge was inspiring and sad at the same time. Why sad, you may ask. That’s because you do not see many from the younger generations in Singapore taking over their parent’s hawker businesses.

It was an honour to be able to taste something that was created way back in 1945, and I’ll definitely recommend that my Singaporean friends give them a try.

Expected damage: RM10 – RM15 per pax

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