YEE KEE Beef Noodles,
No. 32 Jalan Dato’ Lee Fong Yee,
Tel: 06-763 2069
Business hours: Monday-Saturday (9.00am-9.00pm),
MENTION beef noodles and Seremban will come up in conversation. How did Seremban beef noodles get their fame?
I figured it out when we were invited to lunch at Yee Kee Beef Noodles in Seremban recently.
With its bold red walls and modern decor, Yee Kee has little resemblance to its humble beginnings as a stall doling out dry beef noodles in the 1930s. Proprietor Ivan Lau said it was the origin of the famed Seremban beef noodles.
It all began when Hainanese migrant Poon Yee decided to make a living selling beef noodles, which was famous in the Dai Dong Po Village in China where he hailed from.
Little did he know the combination of beef jerky, fried peanuts, pickled cabbage, homemade rice noodles (lai fun) and thick gravy would be a hit for many generations.
Although Poon Yee has long passed away, his winning recipe stayed within the family and is now the star of Yee Kee’s updated menu which features everything from nasi lemak to spaghetti.
Lau’s wife Chu Keet Ying is Poon Yee’s great-grandaughter and is the third generation of the family who continues to sell the famous beef noodles.
Ipoh-born Lau left his job to focus on the family business and introduced the Yee Kee brand to a new generation of customers.
“I realised the business had potential and it was time for a change to suit a wider range of customers and their preferences.
“I was fortunate my mother-in-law was not hesitant to pass down her recipes to me, especially the recipe for beef noodles which was a closely guarded family secret,” he said.
Instead of running a stall, Lau and Chu decided to expand into a restaurant.
As you walk into the restaurant, one of the things that catches the eye is an entire wall featuring a floor-to-ceiling image of cattle grazing in a field with lush hills as backdrop.
Lau said the picturesque wallpaper was a blown-up photo of a farm in Kuala Klawang, Negri Sembilan where he gets his fresh locally-produced beef.
The couple decided to offer halal food so Muslim customers could also enjoy the delectable beef noodles.
“We got our halal certificate last year and we are probably the only establishment selling halal beef noodles.
“As some of our older customers can attest to, there has been no compromise in taste and we have managed to stay as close as possible to the original recipe,” he said.
The crowd puller — Dry Beef Noodles was served in a big bowl with the accompanying condiments.
“Customers can choose from a variety of beef noodles but the favourite is the original dry beef noodles which comes with generous servings of beef brisket, tripe, jerky and our flavourful gravy topped with pickled cabbage, peanuts, toasted sesame seeds and green onions,’ he said.
It is priced at RM6.50 for a regular bowl and RM8.50 for large.
Customers can also choose to have their noodles with their favourite cut of meat; be it lean, tripe, jerky, tendon or beefy meatballs and can opt for the dry or soup version.
Apart from beef noodles, there is a wide variety to choose from including Black Pepper Chicken Chop Rice (RM12.90), Jawa Mee (from RM7.80), Chicken Porridge (RM5.80), Ultimate Beef Ribs (RM22.90) and Tom Yam (from RM7.30).
Side dishes include Beef Rendang (RM5.90), Sambal Sotong (RM4.90), Fried Calamari Rings (RM8.90) and Fresh Vegetables with Oyster Sauce (RM5.50).
Toast with a number of fillings like cheesy chicken, peanut butter and chocolate or plain kaya and butter are on the breakfast menu.
Lau also has whipped up a concoction of specialty drinks with names such as Purple Rain, Passion Pop and Summer Island as well as ice-blended drinks which are popular with the younger crowd.
For the health conscious, there is the interesting Beet Root or Bittergourd Noodles Soup which customers can order with chicken (RM5.90) or seafood (RM8.90).
No meal would be complete without dessert and at Yee Kee, you can go traditional with Guilinggao Jelly (RM2.20) or try something modern like the Chocolate Shooter (RM3.90).
The restaurant’s inviting and cosy interior, modern yet functional lay out and good food make it a great place to grab a bite and catch up with friends.
This is the writer’s personal observation and is not an endorsement by StarMetro.