When I lived in Sydney, Laksa was something we ate almost every week. Despite not having even heard of it before we moved there, Putin loved Laksas so much that he would have eaten them daily if he could afford it. There’s something about that spicy, creamy coconut soup that’s just truly addictive.
For those of you that have never tasted this amazingness, Laksa is a Malaysian/Indonesian spicy soup made from a Laksa paste, stock, coconut milk and meat or veggies. It’s as if all the flavours of Southeast Asia came together in one glorious, perfect dish, with just enough rice noodles simmering under the surface to make it interesting. It’s the perfect sort of dish for a cold autumn evening, and it’s actually ridiculously healthy if you make it right.
Part of “making it right”, for me, is to make your own paste. I always make my own curry pastes, mainly because you can make them exactly to your tastes. It’s also pretty difficult to find a vegan Laksa paste in a lot of places, so I make enough to last for two lots of dinner for 4 people. It’s really easy to make, and you won’t regret it!
(Makes enough to feed 8 )
3 red chillies
1 teaspoon ground coriander
1 teaspoon paprika
1 teaspoon cumin
1/2 teaspoon turmeric
1 white onion, chopped
2 lemongrass stalks, white part only, chopped
3cm piece galangal, peeled and chopped
1 small handful cashew nuts
3 garlic cloves, chopped
2 teaspoons soy sauce
1 tablespoon sesame oil
1 teaspoon brown sugar
2 tbsp lime juice
Heat the coriander, paprika, cumin and turmeric in a pan for several minutes until fragrant
Place the spices in a blender or food processor with all other ingredients and blend into a fine paste
Place into an airtight container, ready for use!
It’s as easy as that! Tomorrow I’ll post up the recipe for the Laksa for which you’ll need this paste. It’s like “cook along with Heather” these days!