29 Aug2006


There were several requests for the recipe for the Bam-e (gosh, will someone please tell me where this name is derived from…) that was served at an office birthday party a week or so ago. I have to say it was the most ingredient rich bam-e I have ever seen, and a nice dark color as well. ff2One of my brothers got married on a small island off of Bohol many years ago and he had a terrific reception on the beach for perhaps 50 of his invited guests and several hundred islanders that showed up at the reception. To feed everyone, there was an entire barge of beer, several lechons, and the most massive amount of bam-e that I have ever seen cooked at the same time. Can you imagine bam-e for a few hundred folks? It probably would have made the Guinness Book of World Records…not to mention it was cooked on the main island and brought out by boat to the reception! At any rate, bam-e is a definitely a Cebuano or Visayan party staple, perhaps the same way Manila residents might serve sweet spaghetti… Here is the recipe that our Office Manager has kindly agreed to share with Marketmanila’s readers (if you want to get total flavor replication, you need to cook it on a large kawa on top of a wood burning fire…):

200-300 grams pork
• 1 cup quartered onion
• 1 tablespoon black peppercorns
• 1 pound bean thread noodles (sotanghon)
• 1 pound egg noodles (pancit canton)
• 2 tablespoons finely minced garlic
• 1 cup minced onion
• 4 tablespoons corn or vegetable oil
• soy sauce and pepper to taste
• 1 cup Chinese dried pork sausage, cut crosswise into 1/8 inch slices
• 3 cups reserved broth
• 1/4 cup tengang daga (black ear fungus), soaked
• 1 cup cabbage, cut julienne style
• 2 cups carrots, cut julienne style
• 1/4 cup scallions
• 1/2 cup coriander leaves
• 1/2 cup snow peas
• 1 teaspoon sesame oil
• 2 cups cooked shredded chicken breast
• 1/2 pound shrimp, shelled and de-veined
• 1/2 cup finely cut scallions
• Several kalamansis
• 2 hard boiled eggs sliced


Drain tengang daga (black ear fungus) well and squeeze to remove excess water. Chop and set aside. Boil pork, in mixture of 5 cups water, bay leaves, onion and peppercorns. When pork is tender, remove and cut into 1/8 by 1/8 inch strips. Set aside and save the broth.

Soak sotanghon to soften; drain and set aside. Blanch rice stick noodles. Strain noodles and set aside.

In a wok, sauté garlic and onion in oil till transparent. Stir in Chinese sausage. Bring to a boil and add 3 cups of reserved broth. Add cabbage ,carrots, 1/4 cup scallions and coriander and cook till done. Add sotanghon, noodles and sesame seed oil. Cook for 10 minutes. Stir in snow peas, pork, tengang daga (black ear fungus), chicken and shrimp. Cook for 3 minutes over low heat. Arrange on large serving platter, sprinkle with 1/2 cup scallions and garnish with sliced kalamansi and sliced egg. Add soy sauce and pepper to taste, if necessary. Some folks like their bam-e soupier than others; over time, the noodles seem to absorb most of the liquid.



  1. Apicio says:

    Sounds suspiciously close to the Mandarin bán mián, noodles with soya sauce and to the Dutch Ban-mi which was brought from Indonesia (along with ristafel) where in all likelihood it was loaned from where the Cebuano’s got theirs. We had a Cantonese guest once who was surprised that the dish we call Pancit (guisado) almost sounds as what they call it. But you know, what renders any loaned dish completely Filipino in style and taste is the calamansi served on the side. Nobody else in the region does that.

    Aug 29, 2006 | 7:39 am


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  3. ykmd says:

    I love bam-i and would gladly eat it everyday! Adding the noodles is always tricky, since the canton cooks much more quickly than the sotanghon. I put both shiitake and tengang daga as well as celery when I cook it. It also doesn’t reheat as well as just plain bihon or sotanghon, but still the taste makes it worth the hassle! And I know its loaded with carbs, but I still eat rice with it! Thanks Apicio for that bit of history :)

    Aug 29, 2006 | 7:57 am

  4. ykmd says:

    Oh and MM, I’m glad your obsessive-compulsive side won…keep posting!

    Aug 29, 2006 | 8:00 am

  5. gonzo says:

    hey apicio, good one.

    Aug 29, 2006 | 8:11 am

  6. millet says:

    apicio, the thais do serve stir-fried noodles with lime wedges. but calamansi – yup, they’re seriously ours. ykmd, that’s exactly the same problem i have with bam-i – i don’t know exactly when to add the sotanghon so that it cooks thoroughly without the canton getting overcooked and soggy.

    Aug 29, 2006 | 10:29 am

  7. anonymous paul says:

    i think “bam-i” or “ba-mee” is what chinese/thai refer to as the yellow noodles or egg noodles. not exactly the dish

    Aug 29, 2006 | 11:51 am

  8. Rose Lyn says:

    yUm! That was superb… :P

    Aug 29, 2006 | 12:05 pm

  9. slym says:

    hi, this is my first time commenting as I was always one of those lurking around quietly

    the bam-e sounds suspiciously close to what the chinese call pan-mee (which literally means noodle layer/flat noodles), however, from the recipe stated above and also the cooking method, the bam-e is more closely related to hokkien noodles, which is loaded with pork scratchings and lards.

    Aug 29, 2006 | 12:19 pm

  10. CWID says:

    The Indonesians call their noodles bami and a popular dish is called bami goreng, or stir fried noodles. Bami could be a Malay word for noodles and perhaps that is also the origin of our bam-i, except that, in its evolved form, two types of noodles are used. How the two noodles came to be in one dish, is another story that needs to be researched.

    Aug 29, 2006 | 3:23 pm

  11. Robyn says:

    Bean thread noodles and egg noodles show up together in a few Chinese-Malaysian stir-fried noodle preparations, not the least of which is Hokkien fried mee. I suspect bam-e comes from Chinese (which dialect?) ba mee … which in Mandarin is ban (fourth tone) mian which, as your first commenter mention is noodles mixed with soy or other sauce. (‘Ban’ = mixed). Whatever, looks delicious. I’m a sucker for fried noodles. :-)

    Aug 29, 2006 | 3:40 pm

  12. CWID says:

    Robyn is right. Hokkien mee uses both egg and bean thread noodles. Hokkien also refers to Fujian, or Fukien, a province in China. Hokkien mee apparently was brought to Malaysia and Singapore by immigrants from Fujian Province(according to Wikipedia). Fujian could be the same origin of our bam-e dish.Just doing a little sherlock…

    Aug 29, 2006 | 4:13 pm

  13. elizabeth says:

    you said boil the pork; but pork is not listed in the ingredients. how much pork do i have to put? thanks for the receipt

    Aug 29, 2006 | 4:40 pm

  14. elizabeth says:

    it’s recipe not receipt. hehehe

    Aug 29, 2006 | 4:41 pm

  15. M says:

    This dish looks like a wetter version of the Chinese fried noodles most Singaporean families do although with gravy (our version is dry-fried but with similar ingredients). It looks delicious!
    MM, my partner (who is Filipino)and I were v. glad to stumble on your website. He was salivating last night over the pictures of all the Philippine delicacies of his childhood and I now have recipes with which to recreate the same.

    Aug 29, 2006 | 4:57 pm

  16. manilastreetwalker says:


    How do you pronounce the word? Bam-eh? Bam-yee? or Ba-mee? Another possible etymology of the word is it could mean ‘Pork Noodles’ from the Hokkien Chinese ‘ba’ (or ‘ma’) meaning pork and ‘Mee’ meaning noodles. Its like the Tagalogs saying Mami to mean soup noodles when it fact, its orginal meaning is simply ‘pork noodles’. The Tsinoys say Gu-ma-mee to pertain to beef noodles(‘gu’ being being beef in Hokkien) and ma-mee to simply mean pork noodles.

    Aug 29, 2006 | 8:40 pm

  17. Marketman says:

    Guys, I wasn’t thinking at all. The Indonesian word for noodle is bakmi (k is silent) or “bah-mee” or “bam-ee” in Cebuano and obviously something similar in many other Malay and Chinese dialects. I am certain it is originally Chinese (since the noodles came from there) and just bastardized into the local names, depending on location…

    Aug 29, 2006 | 9:02 pm

  18. Apicio says:

    To Robyn, yes I should have written it bàn miàn (both fourth).

    And to Millet and Ykmd, suffer no more the over-cooked noodle, nothing in gastronomy is equally unappetizing. A good way of reconciling different speeds of cooking is by doing the important item separately. It bothered me no end never to have mastered this problem with lumpiang sariwa because I like the vegetables just slightly underdone and the potato or camote pieces well done but not disintegrating until I tried quickly steaming the potato separately and adding them at the end of cooking.

    Aug 29, 2006 | 10:30 pm

  19. msc says:

    BAME is the nickname of my sister. she was born in January 6th, the old feastday of the Three Kings. My father named her
    after Balthazar, Melchor and Gaspar. Her full name is BAMELGA.

    Seriously, MM, I enjoy immensely your blog. It is very informative and entertaining. I sometimes based our meals from your recipes. Keep up the good work. You guessed it, I’m a quiet lurker who decided to come out. Your blog makes me feel I’m once more in the old country.

    Aug 30, 2006 | 1:08 am

  20. Anson says:

    If you don’t feel like cooking, the bami at Lido restaurant in Binondo and in San Juan is excellent.

    Aug 30, 2006 | 5:28 am

  21. ykmd says:

    Hi apicio, I already do that with pancit bihon and canton(cook the noodles and sahog separately). Can’t stand having the noodles disintegrate (bihon) or congeal (canton)! Still having hits and misses with the bam-i though so I guess I’ll try using three pans next time! Don’t think hubby will be too happy as he is the designated “washer” for non-dishwasher friendly stuff…

    Aug 30, 2006 | 8:25 am

  22. Marketman says:

    elizabeth! Oops, I hope I am not too late, I forgot to answer your query. You are right, I forgot the pork! Use as much as you like…say 200-300 grams worth might be good. I will add it to the recipe above. Many thanks for catching that!

    Aug 30, 2006 | 8:35 pm

  23. mardie says:

    now you’re talking my language (visayan language) MM. yep, bam-e is the most popular dish in every cebuano’s party, next to lechon that is. and its no wonder that i love it soooo much. i dont miss it though coz in my own way (minus some local ingredients) i still cook it occassionally. but just the same, the sight of a true visayan bam-e never fails to make my mouth water….yuummmmyyy!

    Aug 30, 2006 | 9:09 pm

  24. wendell says:

    it’s more appealing if it’s “saucy”… when it comes to this kind of food, i’m also a sucker

    Aug 31, 2006 | 7:59 am

  25. Maribel Van Hoven says:

    Hi Marketman,
    I just arrived from a long needed vacation and couldn’t wait to read what’s up with you as I love your articles and your way of writing. I noticed that you have several entries on food from Cebu and since I am Visayan I enjoyed reading your reports and comments.
    I don’t know if you remember me but I am the one who cooks suman and sells them at Salcedo Market. You came out with an article on your website on my suman specially about the budbud kabog. ( I have since added at least 8 new flavors to my suman list since then:)) but when I came home from my vacation I was told that it was quite difficult to find the Millet seed now due to lots of demands in Negros ( thats where I used to buy the grain) plus the rains have made it hard to harvest.
    I have only been selling the rice suman but I have many demands for the millet suman (budbud kabog) I would like to know if you know or heard about any place in Cebu where I can find and buy the millet grain ? I have checked the market in Cebu and they say there is none. I was thinking of checking Bohol too but I am not sure if there is. I know that Budbud Kabog is sold in Cebu so they must have the millet grain there …I just can’t find where to buy. (Millet grain for the birds is easy to find but its the ground millet specially for cooking the budbud is what I need)
    I read here that you travel a lot ( read your article on Cebu Pacific and yes I heard some scarey stories on Cebu Pacific as my family travels from Negros to Manila often) I was just wondering if you could help me with this dilemma.
    Thank you in advance.
    P.S. By the way, I must add here that I met your brother in a bazaar in Manila Intercon many many months ago ..( well..he said he was your brother!) but what’s funny was I asked him your real name and he would not give it..and we all had a good laugh..if he was really your brother you have a good protector there..!!!!! :)

    Sep 3, 2006 | 10:34 am

  26. Marketman says:

    Maribel, I have sent you an email off line to answer your queries, of course I remember your budbud, silly, it’s the best I have tasted in Manila!

    Sep 3, 2006 | 10:59 am

  27. alister treyes says:

    Thank you for the BAM-E Ingredients, It’s one of my favorite back in bacolod. i remember the days when my mom cook Bam-e for us, hmmm the taste is awesome with its flavor and aroma… hmmm super delicious!!! Now that my mom is in heaven, no one will cook bam-e for us and other awesome recipes ( dinuguan, valenciana, brownies, callos and etc.). lucky then that i was trained by my mom how to cook all this God given recipes. at least right now if im craving for bam-e or callos or valenciana i could it for myself… again thanks for the awesome recipe!!!

    Sep 11, 2006 | 8:21 pm

  28. joy riobuya says:

    Hello Marketman,

    thanks for your bam-e recipe. am searching the net for the ingredients of it coz i will prepare this for my baby nash birthday this saturday oct 14.

    keep posting.


    Oct 13, 2006 | 10:18 am

  29. Ma. Theresa V. Rios says:

    This one is truly yummy. I remember cebu everytime i think of bam-i as this is where i first tasted it.Cebu’s one of the best. Your page is great ! Keep it up


    Jul 10, 2007 | 11:41 am

  30. cookiemonster says:

    Proud to Cebuano!!! You can only find the best Bam-i in Cebu, thats one of our specialties. Yeah! Go Cebu!!!!!!!

    Oct 12, 2007 | 7:19 am

  31. Lurker says:

    Bam-i is … when you can’t decide between pancit and bihon. So you mix them together! Bihon is what we call sotanghon noodles when you cook them like pancit (no soup). Am I making sense? :p

    Aug 5, 2009 | 2:29 am


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