Posted on | July 5, 2010 | 1 Comment
Oyster Mee Sua is a famous must-try Taiwanese snack from the Shilin night market on par with the popular Taiwan bubble tea. Taiwanese called it as O-Ah-Mi-Sua
It is salted wheat flour vermicelli covered in a layer of thick starchy broth to give it a smooth slippery texture, with oysters, shredded chicken meat, topped with vinegar, chili oil, garlic and parsley leaves to give it the exotic flavor. It is to be eaten piping hot with a spoon only. So convienent that people eat it while standing.
No one really knows the exact origin of the Oyster Mee Sua or vermicelli but there are two sayings:
The first said that this dish originated from the farming villages, where the farmers wives prepared the vermicelli as a snack for the farm workers. As there were many to be fed, the vermicelli was cooked in a huge pot of chicken/pork stock from leftover bones.
Gradually, vermicelli gained popularity and spread to the coastal region where oysters were later added to the dish by fishermen for added nutrition. Other popular ingredients such as pig intestines or meat balls can also added to for more variety.
The second saying, was that the Oyster mee sua was actually a modification of a popular Macau dish called 面线糊 (see below)
Oyster Mee sua is actually a simple to prepare dish. Here is a healthy modified version if you wanted to try making at home:
Ingredients for 2 servings
- 120 g oysters
- 2 tablespoons fresh parsley leaves
- 300 g Mee sua
- 4 cups water or chicken stock
- 2 tablespoon of cornstarch
- Shredded Chicken breast meat
- 2 tablespoons rice wine
- 1 stalk spring onion
- 3 slices ginger
- 2 tablespoons Soya sauce
- 1/2 tsp Bonito fish seasoning or salt
- Minced garlic, black vinegar or chili oil to taste
1. Coat oysters with some cornstarch. Blanch in boiling water. Drain.
2. Heat wok, fry spring onion and ginger. Add water or chicken stock. Boil.
3. Add Mee Sua. When cooked, add the rest of seasonings. Thicken with corn storch. Add in blanched oysters.
4. Garnish with parsley leaves. Add minced garlic, black vinegar or chili oil according to your own taste.
-OR - It is also available in instant pack though highly not advisable!
Nutrition Facts *According to Taiwan society of obesity
- Serving Size: 1 Bowl
- Calories: 220 small / 280 big cal
- Carbohydrate: NA
- Protein: Na
- Fat: NA
- Sodium: NA
- Cholesterol: NA
There really isn’t any nutrition facts of Oyster Mee Sua available – there are the average calories per bowl however the amount of protein, carbohydrates, fat and sodium wasn’t available. However, considering that there is nothing fried, there is very little starch and the portion are quite small - It is a rather healthy food choice.
The oysters are an excellent source of vitamins A, B1, B2, B3, C and D. 4-5 medium size oysters supply the recommended daily allowance of Iron, Copper, Iodine, Magnesium, Calcium, Zinc, Manganese and Phosphorus.
The shredded chicken meat is also a good source of protein.
The vermicelli noodles (mee sua) are actually Low GI and should be slower to digest and keep you full for longer.
Even though the Taiwanese health authorities have actually categorized Oyster Mee Sua as a snack, it is still a carbohydrate-dominant meal containing close to 300 calories. Hence it would be wise to treat it as a meal. You can make it more nutritious and filling by add in more vegetables for fibre.
Lastly as the dish is high in sodium content from the stock and seasonings, do go easy on the chili oil and vinegar.
Remember – eat slowly, put your utensils down between bites and stop eating when you feel 80% full because it’s better to waste it than to ‘waist’ it.