Food products aren’t really something I’ve blogged much about but lately there have been a few things I’ve been totally obsessed with and want to share with everyone. For that reason, I’ve scanned through my old posts and placed them in a new category you can see to the right of this page – Products. Needless to say, if I ever decide to write about something that a company has given me to try, it will be very clearly stated. However, today’s was not given to me; it’s something that I could have sworn I saw on Umami‘s blog a while ago but I can’t seem to find her post anymore.
In a nutshell, this stuff is like crack. Seriously. Tean’s Gourmet Crispy Prawn Chilli. As you would expect, there’s chili and dried prawns in there, all chopped up, and also shallots, garlic, dried anchovies, sugar, salt and MSG all mixed up and fried in oil. I’m not sure how they cook it or how they bottle it but it remains so so crispy. You can just about pick out the ingredients too – dark red chili, golden bits of garlic. It’s not very spicy but very savoury and incredibly addictive – I can eat it plain out of the jar but it really peps up plain rice and noodles and mediocre takeaway fried rice too. I bought mine at Wing Yip and I’m due for a new one: I can already see the bottom of the jar.
Recently, I was craving something on rice for dinner and Spam and eggs came up again as a suitable topping (I have a whole other post on my love of Spam). Now, you’re probably thinking – gosh, how could I better that? (Or I suppose you could be turning up your nose now and moving on from my blog…) Well, bring out a jar of this. Honestly, I could have skipped that egg and just gone all Spam and crispy prawn chili and rice (that should be considered one of the new classic culinary trios).
I reckon this condiment would also work in stir fries and other dishes. The first thing I did try to add it to was konlo mee – a dry noodle dish seasoned with various sauces (I think konlo is dry in Cantonese but please correct me if I’m wrong) – but I found that mixing it in with the moist noodles and wet sauces caused it to lose all its crispiness and hence, half its charm. I would suggest putting the crispy prawn chili at the very end and on top. Yum.
If you do want to make konlo mee at home, boil some fresh egg noodles (like the kind for wonton mee – or any dried egg noodle, even instant noodles), drain then toss them with your choice of sauces and oils to taste. May I suggest some combination of soy sauce, oyster sauce, dark sweet sauce, kecap manis, black vinegar, shallot oil, garlic oil, sesame oil, lard (!) to taste? It’s all just practice practice practice to find that combination that you like – I’m not suggesting you put all those ingredients in there, just try a few and add and subtract as you see fit. As a general guideline, you definitely want least one of the dark sauces and one of the oils in there by default. This is quite nice with some wonton or choy sum soup on the side and some sliced char siu on top. So delicious and it really reminds me of what I ate growing up.
Put a spoonful of crispy prawn chilli on top though and it’s just divine!