There are so many versions of Hokkien Mee. I'm from Penang, and Hubs is from Kuala Lumpur. Hokkien Mee to me is the orangey soupy, prawn noodles, Hokkien Mee to him is the black fried noodles. He is very obstinate and insists on ordering the black fried noodles everytime I say I want Hokkien Mee. But of course, if you want the prawn-based noodles, you'd actually say "hokkien mee" (because hokkien in Hokkien is hokkien) but when you want the black stuff, you'd say Foo-kin Min (nothing rude here, it's just the Cantonese way of saying Hokkien me). You could also say Foo-kin chao, which is fried Hokkien (noodles). So, I'm right yet again! (have I lost you?)
Again with the fried style, there are so many versions out there. Practically anything fried with the hokkien noodles is called 'fried hokkien noodles'. But if you want the real, famous stir-fried-by-sweaty-hawker-in-rat-infested-alley Hokkien noodles, there is only one Hokkien Fried Noodles.
I found the best recipe for Malaysian Hokkien mee online. It's kind of ironic that one of the most popular blogs on Malaysian food is run by a Malaysian in US and this entry comes from a person in Sydney. I strip down the recipe, taking out the sesame oil, chicken stock and oyster sauce.
I think there are two 'musts' for this dish. Apologies to cholesterol levels all around the world for the first - the pork lard. The signature aroma to this dish, comes from the lard oil.
Fry it till golden brown and reserve oil. Then use the oil to fry the noodles.
Drain lard on paper towel, if it makes you feel better. Toss it in at the end so it stays crunchy.
The second is the cornflour. It thickens the sauce so you get a gooey, slurpy black sauce that clings to the noodles.
The third is plenty of nice, fine garlic to stir fry with.
The dish usually goes with fish cake slices, prawns and cabbage.
Best eaten with either sambal belacan or raw garlic and chillies. I prefer the second, Hubs can't live without the first. Since I cook, I did the second.
Don't forget a cuppa Chinese tea to wash down all that oil.