This iconic dish is a celebration of bold and spicy flavors, where creamy coconut milk, fragrant herbs, succulent shrimp, and tender noodles come together to create a symphony of taste. Originating from the bustling hawker stalls of Singapore, Laksa encapsulates the essence of rich culinary traditions and the use of locally sourced ingredients. Join us as we guide you through crafting this delightful masterpiece, inviting you to savor the authentic taste of Singapore’s cherished culinary treasures.
For the Laksa Paste:
- 6 dried red chilies (soaked and deseeded)
- 4 shallots, peeled
- 3 cloves garlic, peeled
- 1 thumb-sized piece of galangal (or ginger), peeled
- 1 stalk lemongrass, sliced (use the lower, tender part)
- 1 teaspoon ground coriander
- 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
- 4 candlenuts (or macadamia nuts)
- 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
For the Laksa Soup:
- 4 cups chicken or vegetable broth
- 1 can (13.5 oz) coconut milk
- 2 tablespoons Laksa paste
- 1 stalk lemongrass, bruised
- 2 kaffir lime leaves
- 1 teaspoon sugar
- Salt, to taste
For the Laksa Toppings:
- 8-10 large shrimp, peeled and deveined
- 4-6 hard-boiled eggs, halved
- 200g (about 7 oz) cooked chicken, shredded
- 200g (about 7 oz) cooked vermicelli or rice noodles
- Bean sprouts, fresh cilantro, and lime wedges for garnish
- Begin by making the Laksa Paste. In a blender or food processor, combine all the paste ingredients and blend until you have a smooth, fragrant paste. Set it aside.
- In a large pot, heat vegetable oil over medium heat. Add the Laksa paste and stir-fry for a few minutes until it becomes aromatic.
- Pour in the chicken or vegetable broth and add the lemongrass stalk, kaffir lime leaves, sugar, and a pinch of salt. Bring the soup to a boil and let it simmer for about 15-20 minutes.
- Remove the lemongrass stalk and kaffir lime leaves from the soup.
- Stir in the coconut milk and simmer for an additional 5 minutes.
- Season the soup with salt to taste.
- Meanwhile, cook the shrimp in boiling water for about 2-3 minutes until they turn pink and opaque. Drain and set aside.
- To serve, place cooked vermicelli or rice noodles in a bowl. Ladle the hot Laksa soup over the noodles.
- Top the Laksa with cooked shrimp, shredded chicken, halved hard-boiled eggs, bean sprouts, and fresh cilantro.
- Serve the Laksa hot, accompanied by lime wedges for an extra burst of flavor.