Traditional Malaysian Laksa

Traditional Malaysian Laksa

This authentic Malaysian laksa is such an iconic dish - a rich, fragrant broth with lots of spice, noodles and deeply satisfying flavours. Whilst there are lots of regional variations, the base generally uses plenty of garlic, ginger, galangal, lemongrass, chilli and dried shrimps (belacan), this latter gives the soup that distinct and intense prawn undertone.

To make life a little less complicated, our friends at Woh Hup have created a delicious laksa paste which makes the perfect base for the soup. This paste is made in Malaysia and used by professional chefs there, giving this paste a truly authentic taste.

Serves 6

For the broth
4 bone-in & skin-on chicken thighs
150g raw shelled prawns
190g Woh Hup Singapore laksa paste
400ml coconut milk
1.2ltrs water
2tsps Somerset Foodie chicken stock

For the toppings
375g rice vermicelli noodles, soaked in boiling water for 2 minutes
300g bean sprouts, blanched for 30 seconds or microwaved for 1 minute
3 eggs, boiled for 6½ minutes, refreshed in cold water. Peeled and halved
6 wild Atlantic prawns, defrosted (optional)
Fresh mint
Fresh coriander
Lime wedges
Ping Coombes Peanut & Shallot Chilli Oil

1. Evenly coat the chicken thighs with the Woh Hup laksa paste and leave to marinade for as long as you have....ideally at least 15 minutes, but up to overnight.

2. Bring 1.2ltrs of water to the boil, adding in 2tsps of Somerset Foodie chicken stock and gently poach the chicken thighs for around 30 minutes. The secret to poaching chicken is not to let the water boil too hard as this will dry out the meat. Ideally, you want just to odd bubble coming to the surface and the water to be around 80-85°C.

3. Whilst the chicken is poaching, boil the eggs and refresh in cold water, peel and half them.

4. Pour boiling water over the vermicelli noodles, leave for 2 minutes. Once they have softened (taste one to check), drain and refresh under cold running water. 

4. Once the chicken is cooked, remove from the liquid, making sure you reserve the broth as this is the base of your soup. Once they have cooled a little remove the bones and shred into bite-sized pieces, keep to one side.

5. In the same poaching liquid, cook the prawns for 30 seconds, or until they have turned pink. Remove and keep to one side.

6. If you are using the wild Atlantic prawns, cook these as well in the poaching liquid for 1 minute, remove and keep to one side. It's nicer for everyone eating the soup if you peel the body part from the prawns, leaving the head on as it looks cool!

7. Now add the coconut milk to the liquid and simmer for 5 minutes.

8. Blanch or microwave the beansprouts.

9. Now you are ready to plate up. Divide the noodles between the bowls, add some poached chicken, beansprouts, prawns and half a boiled egg. Pour over the hot broth and garnish with the herbs, a lime wedge and drizzle over some of Ping Coombes Peanut & Shallot Chilli Oil.

Enjoy! Foodies, don't forget to tag us if you post this on socials and if you enjoyed making this recipe - leave us a review below... Ben x

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