Monday, March 10, 2008

Penang Assam Laksa

My first introduction to this dish didn't go very well. First of all, it caused my school canteen to reek every Wednesday when they made it. And secondly, it was filled with fish (which i hate due to another childhood experience that i'll save for another time). Years later, a chance encounter at the local night market left me in love. Made right, its tangy spicy minty flavor does just
enough to mask the fishy-ness and sure hits the spot. Note: The recipe may need a bit of tweaking to suit personal tastes.

Penang Assam Laksa (Serves 10)
1 pack white rice noodles or Laksa noodles - cooked and set aside
2 pounds fish fillet (pref Spanish Mackerel/ tenggiri or wolf herring/ ikan parang) - poached and minced
3 oz Tamarind juice - made by mixing pulp with warm water
9 cups water
3 tbsp sugar
salt and pepper
10 sprigs of Laksa leaves or Daun Kesum (Vietnamese Mint)

Grind into a paste:
5 Onions
12 cloves garlic
5-8 red chillies (depends on how spicy you want it)
2 stalks Lemongrass
2 torch ginger buds (bunga kantan)
1 tbsp dried fish paste or belacan
1/2 cup water

1 cucumber - shredded
1 pineapple - cubed into small pieces
Mint leaves
1 onion - thinly sliced into rings

Add a little oil in the pot and brown spice paste until aromatic. Add in tamarind juice, water, seasoning and laksa leaves. Bring to a boil. Add in minced fish, lower flame and leave to simmer till soup is thick. Divide your noodles into serving bowls. Ladle soup in and then garnish with cucumber, pineapple, onion and mint leaves. Serve hot.


JennDZ - The Leftover Queen said...

This sounds absolutely delicious to me! Even though you didn't think so at the time, you were so lucky to be served something so yummy for school lunch! :)

Welcome to The Foodie Blogroll!

Jescel said...

hmmnn.. this sounds good. i hope i can find the ingredients here in the US. looks like I need a trip to the asian food market.

Kavs said...

Wow, my first comments... I'm so excited!

Jenn - Haha, i think somehow the best food can be the worst when it ends up in the kitchens of a school canteen. ;-)

jescel - i hope you can find them too... having a bit of trouble translating some of the ingredients into English, but hopefully they're the right ones!