Malaysian Nyonya Kerabu Bee Hoon

Malaysian Nyonya Kerabu Bee Hoon recipe by

Nyonya Kerabu Bee Hoon.  Maybe it’s best to translate first:

Nyonya = A culture, and cooking style, which arose from the fusion of Chinese and Malay cultures in areas of what is now Malaysia, Singapore, and Indonesia.

Kerabu = A spicy, sweet & sour, Malaysian salad

Bee Hoon (or Mee Hoon) = Rice Vermicelli

Put those together and you have a light, flavorful Malaysian dish, enjoyed for breakfast, lunch, dinner, or as a snack.  Never a wrong time to eat Nyonya Kerabu Bee Hoon.

ingredients for kerabu mee hoon

Kaffir lime leaves, lemongrass, shallots, garlic, torch ginger flower, mint leaves, and toasted shredded coconut, mixed together with springy rice noodles, then tossed with spicy chili sambal and a squeeze of zesty calamansi lime.  A vibrant, colorful noodle dish that not only represents Malaysian cuisine, but also its diverse culture.

Malaysian Nyonya Kerabu Bee Hoon recipe by

Not a complicated dish to prepare, but it may be difficult to source all the ingredients.  That’s not a problem – either omit what you can’t find, or try substituting with another ingredient.  Instead of sambal belacan, try Thai tom yam paste.  Instead of calamansi lime, try a squeeze of a sour lime mixed with sugar, or pineapple juice.

Just make sure your Nyonya Kerabu Bee Hoon has rice vermicelli, and a mix of spicy, sour, and sweet flavors.  And enjoy it anytime of the day!

Malaysian Nyonya Kerabu Bee Hoon recipe by

Buy Malaysian satay seasoning, tandoori seasoning and chinese five spice available at season with spice asian spice shop

Malaysian Nyonya Kerabu Bee Hoon recipe 
by Season with Spice
Makes 4 servings

200g rice vermicelli
12 - 14 medium or large prawns – shelled and deveined
6 kaffir lime leaves (one leaf = both segments) - center spine removed; finely sliced
3 stalks lemongrass (use the bottom white part only) – bruised and finely sliced
12 shallots – thinly sliced
2 cloves garlic - minced
2 torch ginger flower – finely sliced
2/3 cup freshly grated coconut
1/4 cup dried shrimp
Pinch of salt, or to taste

Sambal belacan spice blend:
5 tbsp sambal belacan
1 tbsp of coconut sugar
Juice of 8-10 calamansi limes

A handful of mint leaves – finely sliced
Red chili peppers – sliced
Calamansi lime - halved
Roasted unsalted peanuts - coarsely ground (optional)
Fried shallots (optional)

1. Prepare kaffir lime leaves, lemongrass, shallots, garlic and torch ginger flower. Combine in a large mixing bowl.
2. In a frying pan or wok, toast the grated coconut until browned. Add to the mixing bowl.
3. Soak the dried shrimps for 10 minutes, and then drain. Grind the shrimp with a food processor or pound in a mortar & pestle until coarsely ground. Then add to the wok, and toast for two minutes until fragrant and lightly browned. Transfer to the mixing bowl.
4. Blanch rice vermicelli for 1-2 minutes or cook according to the package. Transfer to a strainer and drain. Then add to the mixing bowl.
5. In a small bowl, prepare the sambal belacan spice blend, mixing well to ensure the sugar dissolves. Set aside.
6. In the wok, add 1 tbsp of oil, and pan-fry the prawns until cooked (or you can boil them in salt water for a couple of minutes). Add to the mixing bowl.
7. Toss all the ingredients in the bowl well to combine. Add garnishings, then dish out and serve immediately.

1. Another version is Tom Yam style Kerabu Mee Hoon. Simply replace the sambal belacan spice blend with instant tom yam paste, and omit the toasted coconut.
2. You can also serve kerabu bee hoon cold, so no need to heat the leftovers.