Wednesday, July 16, 2014

Sweet Potato Laksa

Singaporeans are food crazy. I would say that the two national pastimes here are shopping and eating. Locally born Singaporeans are called Peranakan; they are descendants of Chinese or Indian male immigrants who married Malay women in the seventeenth or eighteenth centuries. Laksa is a traditional Peranakan curried soup, served over rice noodles.

Chinese Peranakan cooking blends Chinese ingredients with Malay sauces and spices. Peranakan food features shallots, chillies, preserved soybeans, prawn paste, and thick coconut milk. My favourite Paranakan dish is laksa. I like the tangy spice of the curry that is calmed (a little) by the coconut milk.

I used a recipe from Donna Hay's website as part of the Wednesdays with Donna Hay blogging group. It was my turn to pick, hence the laksa! I hope the others were able to find laksa paste in order to make it. And I wonder what they thought of it.

If you want to join us, next week we are making Yorkshire pudding from Modern Classics 1. Visit the others in my blogging group to see if they liked the recipe: Margaret from Tea and Scones, Kayte from Grandma's Kitchen Table, Gaye from Laws of the Kitchen, and Chaya from Bizzy Bakes.

A few other notes:
  • If you like your curries mild, use half the recommended amount of laksa paste.
  • Laksa is not vegetarian since the paste is based on fish sauce and prawns. So why not throw in some whole, cooked prawns as well?
  • I made a simplified chicken laksa in 2010 without a paste. Have a look at the recipe here.
  • What will you do with the leftover bean sprouts? Make this bean sprout salad, which was a revelation to me about how nice they can be when briefly cooked. Or try ginger noodle soup.
  • What about the leftover kaffir lime leaves? If you manage to find them, use one or two for this dish and freeze the rest in a ziplock bag. Take out one or two whenever you need them.

Is eating your "national pastime"?

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