A different way…

In my growing up years, we would always have Bovril or Marmite…


…in the house and we usually would eat porridge with those and sometimes, my mum would use those to make soup to go with our meals. I do vaguely recall having them with bread too.

Personally, I liked Marmite more as I thought Bovril had some kind of rusty taste but eventually, especially after I had tasted the latter with noodles

Bovril mee sua with fried egg
*Archive photo*

…my opinion changed somewhat. I seldom buy Marmite anymore these days though because nobody else in the house likes it and it sure does not come cheap even though it is just yeast extract, not beef but then again, it’s the same with Bovril these days though bottles of the real beef or chicken varieties may be available at some supermarkets.

I do know for a fact that there are some very popular dishes at Chinese restaurants, Marmite crab, for instance but I have never tried those and I did see somewhere the other day packets of the instant Marmite whatever that one can use to cook the dishes. Other than with porridge, I’ve had Marmite with butter on bread or cream crackers and I quite enjoy it like that and the other day, I tried noodles with it too.

Well, it so happened that I had some instant noodles in the house – those cheap ones selling for less than RM3.00 for a pack of 6 packets but even though the expiry date was not until next month…

Expiry date

…the bumbu (seasoning) had gone hard so I just threw it away and used the noodles my own way. I actually like their noodles – they take a bit longer to cook and they stay nice and firm like some Korean noodles that I had had before – most instant noodles that will go soft and soggy if you boil them a little too long.

These were the ingredients I prepared…


I fried some sliced shallots in a bit of cooking oil (some would prefer to use lard, I know) – do make sure to turn off the heat once it has started to turn brown otherwise it may end up burnt and will taste bitter. It will continue to cook in the residual heat and will be golden brown soon enough. I also had some sliced spring onion from my garden and I used the chili powder from inside the packets of instant noodles. As for the Marmite, I just added around a teaspoon of it – for one thing, it is salty and besides, I would not want its taste to drown out the fragrances of the other ingredients. You may add a pinch of msg as well if you so desire.

Once I had cooked the noodles, I drained them well and tossed them in all the ingredients and served…

Marmite mee with egg 1

…with one hard-boiled egg.

Of course, you may want to blanch some green vegetables and have them by the side or you can have some thin slices of char siew on top for a more balanced meal but I did not have those in the house so this…

Marmite mee with egg 2

…would have to do for my breakfast that morning.

Yes, I did enjoy that with Marmite instead of Bovril and actually, for the uninitiated, they cook our Sibu kampua mee more or less the same way – the only difference is that they use chio cheng (light soy sauce) instead of those in the preparation.