Laksa is a spicy noodle soup with a curry-like gravy that’s very popular in Malaysia and Singapore. Foodies here will probably know how ‘unhealthy’ laksa can be because of the use of coconut milk to give it that rich and creamy flavour and not forgetting that layer of reddish-looking oil that’s always floating on the top too – doesn’t sound very heart-friendly isn’t it? 😕
Most of the times when I cook dishes that require coconut milk, I’d replace that with reduced fat evaporated milk or even skimmed milk. This time round, I just want to recommend another great substitute i.e. freshly made unsweetened soy milk (click on link for recipe) which I have used in this laksa recipe that really brings the dish to another whole new level. That’s right, laksa can indeed be made healthy this way. And you don’t need to use an excessive amount of oil like what the hawkers do to fry the spice paste too. Give it a try! 😉
Healthy Laksa Recipe
Ingredients (serves 4)
500g thick bee hoon (rice vermicelli), blanched
12 large prawns, peeled & blanched
200g bean sprouts, blanched
100g fried tofu puffs, cut into small triangles
160g fish cake, sliced
1000ml unsweetened soy milk (see soy milk recipe here)
2 stalks lemongrass, use bottom white part only
2 tbsp dried shrimps, soaked in water & drained
2 tbsp sunflower oil
500ml chicken broth
1 tsp salt
1/2 tbsp sugar
chopped laksa leaves as garnish
10 dried chillies, soaked in water to soften
2 tsp dried shrimp paste (belachan)
1 tbsp ground coriander
1/2 tsp ground turmeric
15 shallots, peeled
2″ knob galangal, peeled & sliced
6 cloves garlic, peeled & crushed
1. Using a food processor or blender, blend together all the ingredients for the spice paste till fine.
2. Heat oil in pan and fry spice paste, dried shrimps and lemongrass till fragrant (about 5 minutes).
3. Add chicken broth and soy milk. Bring to a boil and then reduce heat to a low simmer to prevent curdling. Season with salt and sugar to taste.
4. Divide the blanched noodles into 4 equal portions and top with prawns, bean sprouts, tofu puffs and fish cake. Ladle laksa broth over and garnish with chopped laksa leaves.