Ngiu Chap: The Flavourful Beef Noodle Dish of Kota Kinabalu
Ngiu Chap 牛什 is a signature beef and noodle soup found mainly in Kota Kinabalu, Sabah. The name is the Hakka pronunciation for “mixed beef”. The name comes from the mixture of different beef parts that come with the soup, mostly sliced beef, beef balls, beef brisket, beef tendon, beef tripe, beef tongue and more. Ngiu Chap is likely to be created by Chinese immigrants coming from Hainan Island. Hainanese people are well-known in using all parts of animals in their cuisines.
Ngiu Chap’s soup is traditionally made from beef broth which has been cooked with beef bones, simmered for hours with white radishes, various spices and aromatic herbs. The resulting soup is very fragrant and full of beefy flavours, while still being light and not greasy.
Ngiu Chap is served with different types of noodles. It can be egg noddles, vermicelli, flat rice noodles or even silver needle noodles. The noodles can be served in the beef soup, or be tossed in soy sauce in a separate bowl.
Nowadays, Ngiu Chap has many different variations, from the lighter Hainanese style to heartier Hakka-influenced flavours, and even village-style adapted for indigenous Sabahan palate. There are also experimental flavour combination like curry laksa-based Ngiu Chap.