Laksa is an absolutely delicious noodle soup dish from Southeast Asia. There are 2 main types: Curry laksa (coconut base) and Asam laksa (sour tamarind base). Each of these types has many variants based on ingredients and flavours of the region. It is also common to combine both types to have a mixture of coconut and tamarind flavours.
Today, I’m showcasing my take on a curry laksa. This type is commonly known as “curry mee” in parts of Malaysia and Indonesia. Traditional ingredients in this dish include shrimp paste and seafood, but I have used red miso as a vegan substitute. This dish also traditionally includes yellow egg noodles, but for a vegan option, rice vermicelli noodles are a perfect traditional substitute.
This is one of the few Malay dishes I know, but I’m definitely eager to learn more. If you have any Malay or Singaporean recipes to share, please post them in the reply section.
**Feel free to click on red links for photo references **
- 8 medium dried chillies
- 2 tbsp aka miso paste
- 3 large shallots, chopped
- 1 inch piece of galangal, chopped (substitute: ginger)
- 3 cloves of garlic
- 2 pieces of lemongrass, trimmed (white part only)
- 6 candlenuts (substitute: macadamia nuts or cashews)
- 2 tsp ground coriander
- 1 tsp paprika
- 1 tsp cumin
- 1 tsp turmeric (or 1 inch piece of fresh turmeric, grated)
- 1 tbsp peanut oil
Laksa recipe makes 2 servings
- 3 tbsp coconut oil (substitute: vegetable oil)
- 1 chinese eggplant, sliced
- 12 green beans, halved
- 1 1/2 tsp of salt (extra to taste)
- 8 tbsp of curry paste
- 2 cups of vegetable broth (I use bouillon broth)
- 2 Kaffir lime leafs, cut in half
- 1/2 cup coconut milk
- 1 tbsp sugar
- bean sprouts
- Thai basil (optional garnish)
- Mint (optional garnish)
- Sambal (optional garnish)
- Lime (optional garnish)
- 2 cups of Yellow noodles and/or rice vermicelli noodles (vermicelli is vegan)
- Other optional accompaniments (not included in this recipe): Hard boiled egg, soy chicken, julienne cucumber
- Laksa Paste: Soak chillies in boiling hot water for 10 minutes, until soft. In a pan, add peanut oil on medium-high heat and pan fry coriander, paprika, cumin and turmeric together until fragrant (about 1-2 mins). Puree all ingredients and 1 tbsp of water in a food processor or with a hand blender. Voila! You have your curry paste!
- In a wok or pan, heat up 2 tbsp of coconut oil on medium-high heat. Add eggplant and green beans. Fry for approx. 8 minutes (until eggplant has browned).
- Once the eggplant and green beans are cooked, remove them from the wok. In the same wok on medium-high heat, add another 1 tbsp of coconut oil and the curry paste. Cook for approx. 2 minutes (until fragrant).
- Add vegetable broth and kaffir lime leaves. Let simmer on medium for 5 minutes.
- Add coconut milk, sugar, 1 tsp salt, tofu puffs, bean sprouts and the cooked eggplant and green beans to the wok. Let simmer on medium for 10 minutes.
- Noodles: If you are using yellow noodles, cook in boiling water for 3 minutes (until tender). If you are using vermicelli noodles, soak in cold water for 30 minutes and then blanch in boiling water for 1 minute.
- In a bowl first arrange noodles, followed by soup and vegetables. Garnish with Thai basil, mint, lime and serve with sambal. Enjoy 🙂