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Myths On Mee – Debunking The Myths On Sarawak’s Kampua Noodles
Food | 30 November 2010

By Alex Ngai

MYTH: The only noodles from Sarawak are kolo mee.

FALSE! Although kolo mee is one of the most famous dishes from Sarawak, these egg noodle are not the only noodle from the East Malaysian state. There is another contender, lesser known in Singapore, but equally delicious, called kampua noodles.

MYTH: They look the same, only with different names.

FALSE! Look closely, and you will see the marked difference. Kampua noodles are thicker and less curly compared to kolo mee. The reason: It is hand-made and therefore not as curly as the machine-made kolo mee. Even the sauce is different. Kolo mee uses vinegar while traditional kampua noodles come with pork lard and onion oil.

MYTH: Kampua noodles are just a Sarawak version of wanton noodles.

FALSE! The original kampua noodles are seasoned with pork lard and onion oil and garnished with spring onions. The inclusion of ingredients such as minced pork, vegetables, char siew (roasted pork) and wanton (meat dumplings) came much later, mostly to satisfy customer requests. The added ingredients may be new, but the essence of the noodles is in the traditional sauce.

MYTH: Good kampua noodles can only be found in Sarawak.

FALSE! Earlier this year, a newspaper in Sarawak reported kampua noodles in Sarawak were losing their authenticity. The writer said he found a shop in Singapore that was selling kampua noodles, which tasted more authentic than the ones in Sarawak. He introduced the shop as QQ Noodles.


Kampua noodles, which mean dry plate noodles in the Foochow dialect, are one of the specialties of Sarawak, right alongside kolo noodles. Although similar, kolo noodles originate from Kuching, while Kampua noodles hail from the Sibu district. Created by the Chinese of Foochow dialect, kampua noodles are handmade and softer than their Kuching counterparts and so are able to absorb all the sauce on the plate.

Going back 50 years, QQ Noodles keeps the authenticity of their noodles from way back as a street-side stall. Renaming their noodles as QQ noodles reflects how bouncy and soft their 100% hand-made noodles are.

Mr Steven Chua, owner of QQ Noodles, strives to recreate the traditional taste from his childhood. A second generation owner, he inherited the family business after his parents retired and brought the signature dish of his hometown to Singapore.

There is more to Sarawak than kolo noodles. There are kampua noodles, and they are available at QQ Noodle House!

The above article is contributed by eMAG, a free quarterly publication.

eMAG is distributed at all 7-ELEVEN stores located in Shell Stations, selected prime landed estates and MRT stations.

Read eMAG online now!

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