One special Har Mee (Prawn Noodle) in Penang uses mantis prawn to enhance the sweetness of the noodles. This stall at Sim Kin San Coffee Shop at the end of Rangoon Road has a ‘parent’ stall at another coffee shop just across the street. Ah Soon Kor Har Mee is named after the son (previously unnamed) who is going to take the helm when the father and original cook fully retires.
Depending on the cook, actually there are a few ways to prepare the prawn noodle’s soup. It could be prawn only, prawn + pork bones or pork bones only. Here, the pure prawn or pure pork bones version are available. The latter is not so common and would depend largely on the chili paste that is infused with prawn flavor. If you are not local and only here for only one-off tasting, get the special version @ RM5 to RM7 that comes with mantis prawn, ribs, some intestines (tell him to exclude if you’re not a fan) and roast pork.
Compared to the other Har Mee in the island, Ah Soon Kor’s version is not as spicy with a stronger prawn taste. With the addition of mantis prawn, the soup would be further infused with a rich seafood sweetness. It is unique on its own and I haven’t been able to find another Har Mee that tastes quite the same.
In case you’re wondering, those brown chunks at the center of the noodles are the mantis prawns. They have been stir fried with Ah Soon Kor’s special chili concoction to give it a slightly spicy kick while still preserving the flesh’s natural sweetness.
Ah Soon Kor is the person shown here and he still makes it a point to wake up at the wee hours of the night to fry the mantis prawns and prepare the soup. He also prepares the noodle personally, unlike some other famous hawkers prefer to employ foreign workers for that task. His daily life is basically the opposite of ours, as he operates the stall as early at 5.30am and usually closes around 1pm or when his noodles sell out, whichever is earlier.
If you are planning to give Ah Soon Kor’s Har Mee a try it is advisable to be here before 11am especially on weekdays. This is because many office workers like to take away in 10s and 20s packets for their lunch break.
Ah Soon Kor Har Mee
Sin Kim San Coffee Shop
Jalan Rangoon (off Macalister Road)
GPS Coordinates: N5 24.994 E100 19.429
Open 6am to 1pm daily or until finish (off days not fixed)