Dining Out 10 March 2023

Get To Know The Secret Behind Bangkok’s 130-Year-old Crispy Noodle Delicacy

What’s the secret behind this crispy noodle shop in Bangkok?

Bangkok Bib Gourmand Street Food

Taste a bite of history with the delicious Mee Krob at the 2023 MICHELIN Bib Gourmand recipient Tek Heng (Mee Krob Jeen Lee) restaurant in Talat Plu, Bangkok.

Known for its unique crispy vermicelli, the 130 years old family recipe is said to have Thailand’s King Rama V praising this delicacy. Find out what makes this very dish a must-try.

“It all goes back to the time of my great-grandfather,” says Suwanit "Toi" Nitipornpisith, the 4th generation descendant of the Thai-Teochew founders of Tek Heng (Mee Krob Jeen Lee).

“He was making crispy noodles by the canal running along the palace and one day, King Rama 5 of Thailand travelled this way and smelled something so deliciously aromatic. Then, he got to try our crispy noodles which he said were very delicious,” she continues.
He then bestowed the name, “Heavenly Delicious Crispy Noodles”. And Tek Heng (Mee Krob Jeen Lee) was born.

Now run by the fourth generation of a Thai-Chinese family, Nitipornpisith operates as front of the house while her sister rules over the kitchen.

We asked her about the secrets behind this iconic dish of Talat Plu.

 (© Michelin)
(© Michelin)

What makes your crispy noodles so special?
“It is so delicious because the recipe is from local wisdom. We only use fresh, natural ingredients. And we also add bitter orange zest which creates an amazing aroma.
“Back then, everyone loved eating crispy noodles. People say that our crispy noodles are different from what they usually had because they are sticky and dense. You can enjoy a full bite at a time for even a more fun way of eating. It’s very crunchy and packed with flavours. Sour, salty, sweet – all in one bite!”

What is best to have it with?
“I’d say Tom Yam Kung as its sourness helps cut the sweetness and gives more dimension of flavour to the crispy noodles. Have a try. I guarantee that it’s one of a kind."

RELATED: This Almost Century Old Eatery Serves Delicious Five-spice Duck

Hero image and other images: © MICHELIN Guide Thailand

Tek Heng Mee Krob Jeen Lee

฿฿ · Thai-Chinese
Bib Gourmand • Inspectors’ favourites for good value
326-330 Thoet Thai 18 Alley, Talat Plu, Thon Buri, Bangkok

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