Saturday, March 13, 2010

Cooking Challenge: Noodles

Delicious Laksa
Sorry everyone, this blog post comes without photos- once this dish was ready to eat, there was no stopping for photographs, we just gobbled it up- truly delicious.
Laksa is definitely my favourite noodle dish- it would be a strong contender for my favourite food full stop. So I am very happy to have this recipe to make my own!
This recipe comes from the book "Spicery" by Ian and Elizabeth Hemphill. You may know Herbie's spices- Sydney based spice merchants who stand for great quality spices and often have hard to get spices unavailable elsewhere- well this is their book.
Each chapter is devoted to a different spice and outlines a bit about the plant it comes from and it's history and traditional uses as well as how to prepare, store and use and then around 3 recipes for each spice.
The Laksa recipe is in the Galangal chapter where I learned, for example, that in the Orient, powdered galangal was once used as snuff- so reknowned is it for its perk-me up qualities (maybe that's why I love a laksa as a hangover cure!).
The recipe for the laksa powder makes plenty for at least 3 laksa meals (each being for 2). Once the powder is made, throwing the soup together is super quick and there is no reason you couldn't make this after work.
The base of the laksa powder is a madras curry powder- also delicious- easy to cook up with meat, veges and a tin of tomatoes.

Madra Curry Powder
15 tsp ground coriander
6 tsp ground cumin
3 tsp turmeric
2 tsp ground ginger
1 1/2 tsp ground black pepper
1 tsp ground yellow mustard seed
1 tsp ground fenugreek
1 tsp ground cinammon
1/2 tsp ground cloves
1/2 tsp ground green cardamon seed
1/2 tsp chilli powder

Laksa Spice Mix
12 tsp Madras curry powder
3 tsp ground fennel seed
1 1/2 tsp salt
1 tsp ground galangal
1 tsp chilli flakes
1 tsp sugar

(Both these mixes store well in an air tight jar)

Laksa (for 2)
1 tbsp. vegetable oil
6 tsp Laksa Spice Mix
1/2 chopped onion
750ml chicken stock
1/2 tsp shrimp paste
400ml coconut cream
250 g chicken (or tofu or seafood), sliced
100g bean sprouts
200g hokkein noodles (cooked and drained)- warmed
1/2 tbsp. Vietnamese mint leaves
1/2 tbsp coriander leaves

Heat the oil in a large saucepan, add the Laksa Spice Mix.
Add the onion and stir for 2 minutes.
Add the stock and shrimp paste and bring to the boil.
Add coconut cream and chicken and simmer genly for 10 minutes (or until the chicken is cooked)
Prepare two bowls with half the noodles and bean sprouts.
Divide the soup between the two bowls and top with the mint and coriander.

Enjoy, I thought this was a great recipe!

3 comments:

Rilsta said...

Wow, fantastic effort making this from scratch. I'm always scared off when I see so many ingredients, though it may be easy to make and I don't have many spices in my pantry!

Maree said...

Hi Rilsta, don't be daunted, this is so easy- once the powder is done. I cook alot of curries and other Eastern delights- the spice cupboard just builds- its great having everything there!

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