Special Curry Laksa

·         10  dried large chillies soaked in warm water for a few minutes and drained
·         10 rose shallots (the large variety)
·         5 large cloves of garlic peeled
·         6-8 candlenuts
·         2.5 cm peeled and chopped turmeric root /fresh turmeric/kunyit basah
·         3.5 cm peeled and chopped galangal /lengkuas
·         5 stalks stripped and chopped lemon grass/serai
·         3 cm cube of belancan (crushed dried shrimp paste)

Additional Soup Ingredients:
·         500 ml  thick coconut milk
·         1.25 litres of thin coconut milk.
·         150 ml cooking oil
·         400 gm prawns – cleaned and de-veined
·         3 fried tauhu , sliced thinly
·         3 stalks of polygonum (kesum) asian mint leaves.
·         10 pieces of tofu puffs roughly chopped into 2.5 cm pieces
·         15 fish balls ( alternatively use 300 gm shredded cooked chicken)
·         1 chicken cube (crumble)
·         salt to taste (around 2 teaspoons)
·         2 tbsp light brown sugar
·         400 gm bean sprouts – quickly blanched and refreshed in cold water.
·         300 gm rice vermicelli (noodles) blanched in boiling water for 2 minutes and drained
Garnish – Ingredients:
·         1 large cucumber, peeled, seeded and sliced in very long fine strips
·         Chopped spring onions
·         Shallot crisps
·         2 stalks of  finely shredded polygonum (kesum) leaves
s       Some thinly sliced red/green chillies


15 dried chillies -soak in hot water for 20mins and drained
1 1/2 in shrimp paste
6 rose shallots (medium variety)
1 tsp tamarind juice
salt and sugar to taste

(For sambal- grind coarsely all the ingredients except tamarind and seasoning.
Heat 5 tbsp oil, saute all the ingredients together until oil floats. Dish out).

1, Prepare the coconut milk, either from a packet or using fresh coconut to create a thick cream and set aside.
2. Prepare the coconut milk as well and set aside. Add the dried anchovies to 1.5 litres of water and bring to the boil, simmering for 30 minutes to reduce to 1 litre stock. Strain and set aside.
3. Blend all the paste ingredients into a smooth paste either with pestle and mortar or an electric blender.
4. Heat 2 tablespoons of cooking oil in a wok until almost smoking and add the paste (watch out for the spitting). Fry off the paste for a couple of minutes to blend the flavours or until oil floats.
5. Add the prawns and fry them till they begin to turn pink.
6. Crumble in the chicken cube followed by the thin coconut milk and a bunch of whole laksa leaves. Simmer for 7 minutes, stirring regularly.
7. Add the chopped bean curd puffs, fish balls and coconut cream to the mixture, seasoning with sugar and salt, simmering for about 5 minutes.
8. While this simmers, arrange the noodles on a platter with all the other garnish ingredients in separate bowls.
To serve, put a small portion of bean sprouts and noodles into a rice/soup bowl, sprinkle on cockles(optional), add a small spoon of chilli paste, a few sliced chillies, threads of cucumber and shredded laksa leaves. Ladle enough of the soup on top to cover the ingredients. Serve immediately and savour.