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Bakmi consists of two Minnan Chinese words literally translated to
English as “meat noodles”. Bakmi is a wheat based noodle which was
brought to Southeast Asia by Chinese merchants, and is today a common
ingredient, especially in Thailand and in the Indonesian Chinatowns. The
dish has also been further developed to more closely align with the
local tastes. Bakmi is between Chinese style wheat noodles and Japanese
Udons in thickness, and there are several variants of bakmi in
The most common bakmi in Indonesia is bakmi kuning, or ‘yellow noodles’.
In Thailand, wheat noodles are also known as bami. It is eaten mainly
in noodle soups and in Chinese style stir-fried noodle dishes. It is
also used in a Northern Thai curry-soup dish called khao soi.
Bakmi/bami strongly resembles the Chinese noodles called lamian and mee pok.
The words mie and bami, used in Dutch, come from bakmi and were
introduced into the Dutch language during the Dutch colonial period in
Indonesia. Indonesian food is very popular in the Netherlands, and bami
goreng (fried bakmi} is a popular dish.
When bakmi is intended for use in soup, it is usually boiled
separately from the broth. The noodles are usually mixed with either
pork fat or beef fat. They are then served with toppings that vary from
chicken to bok choy or bakso (meatballs). The soup is served in a
different bowl, and is added to the noodles by the individual diner
according to taste.
Bakmi can also be fried. The bakmi is first boiled before being
stir-fried with vegetables, sweet soy sauce and meat. However, there are
exceptions such as Ifu mi, which is bakmi that is first deep fried and
then topped with vegetables, meat and gravy.