March 15, 2010

Noodles in Spicy Sour Soup/Assam Laksa

This dish is a popular hawker food in Penang (northern state in Malaysia). Assam Laksa is aromatic sweet and spicy noodle soup with fish as the main ingredient. The other important ingredient is polygonum (daun kesom). It is served with cucumber, pineapple, mint, and shrimp paste on the side. It's delicious and it's addictive!
2 cans of mackerel or salmon in salt water, flaked into pieces
5 cups water or fish stock
A bunch of polygonum, washed
3 slices of dried assam gelugar
½ cup tamarind pulp or paste (soak tamarind pulp with water to get the juice)
3-4 pieces assam gelugar (dried tamarind peel)
2 tsp. sugar
1 package dried rice noodles (or 1 lb. fresh "lai fun")
3 lemon grass, crushed
1 large onion
3 shallots
1 small piece ginger
1 inch galangar, cut in chunks
1 inch turmeric (or 2 tsp. turmeric powder)
5 dried chillies, soaked in water and remove seeds
1 tsp. shrimp paste (optional)
1 cup mint leaves, washed and stems removed
1 cucumber, peeled and julienned
1 red onion, sliced
½ cup ripe pineapple, julienned
1. Blend spices together into a fine paste. In a large pot bring water to a boil, then in ground spices, polygonum and assam gelugar. Bring to a fast boil for about 10 minutes, then add in the fish. Simmer on low heat uncovered for about 20-30 minutes. Season to taste with salt and sugar. Adjust seasoning accordingly to your taste.
2. If using dried noodles, follow cooking instruction on the package. Rinse the fresh noodles in running water. Drain and divide noodles in individual soup bowls.
3. Remove polygonum leaves from the soup. Fill enough soup into the bowls and garnish with the fresh chopped vegetables and fruits. Serve immediately.
Note: If using fresh fish, boil fish in water till cooked. Remove fish and flake flesh from fish, taking care to remove small bones. Strain fish broth to another pot and continue from step 2 above.
Printable Recipe

1 comment:

MaryMoh said...

I really miss Assam Laksa. Yours look very delicious. Over here in UK, I just use the ready packeted ones to cook when my craving hits me. I need to cook again now that I see yours.'s so delicious.