There are many different laksas, but all are based on noodles cooked in a spicy coconut broth. Rich and creamy. Singapore laksa marries the Malay, Chinese styles of cooking.
Recipe for Singapore Laksa
Ingredients for Singapore Laksa:
- Spice paste: 8 shallots, peeled and chopped
- 4 cloves garlic, peeled and chopped
- 45 g fresh ginger, peeled and chopped
- 2 stalks lemongrass, trimmed and chopped
- 6 candlenuts (buah keras)
- 4 dried red chillies, soaked and seeded
- 2 tbsp dried shrimp, soaked until soft
- 1-2 tsp belacan (shrimp paste)
- 1-2 tsp palm sugar (or sugar of your choice)
- 1 tbsp vegetable oil
- 4-6 shallots, peeled and finely sliced (to make fried shallots)
Other ingredients for Laksa:
- 600 ml unsweetened coconut milk
- 400 ml chicken stock
- 100 g fresh prawns, shelled and deveined
- 100 g fresh squid, cleaned and sliced
- 6-8 fresh scallops
- 85 g fresh clams, shelled
- sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
- 225 g fresh rice noodles or dried vermicelli, soaked in lukewarm water until pliable
- 100 g fresh beansprouts, or uncooked or blanched
- small bunch laksa leaves or mint, roughly chopped
- chilli oil
- 3-4 tau pok, sliced (optional)
- Make spice paste, using a pestle and mortar or a blender to grind all the ingredients, except oil and sliced shallots. Bind paste with 1 tbsp oil and set aside.
- Heat enough oil in a wok to deep-fry shallots. Fry shallots until crisp and golden. Drain shallots onto paper towel and set aside.
- Discard the oil, reserving 2 tbsp. Heat reserved oil in wok and stir in spice paste. Cook over low heat for 3-4 minutes, until fragrant.
- Add coconut milk and chicken stock. Bring to the boil, stirring all the time. Add prawns, squid, scallops and clams, and simmer gently just until cooked. Season with salt and pepper.
- To serve, divide noodles among individual bowls. Add beansprouts and ladle broth and seafood over top, making sure noodles are submerged.
- Garnish with crispy shallots, laksa or mint leaves, tau pok and drizzle of chilli oil.
Recipe Credit – 500 Asian Dishes by Ghillie Basan