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Laksa is a popular Peranakan dish. It is a spicy noodle soup made of rice vermicelli, prawn and chicken. It is either cooked in coconut milk or tamarind water.
Laksa is a soul food for many Malaysians. The combination of fresh sea food and spicy sambal will you wanting for more.
The most important ingredient of laksa soups are sambal. Sambal is a chilli paste which is used extensively in Malaysian cuisine. No laksa would be complete without this ingredient.
The popularity of laksa is such that there are a number of variants for this dish. Here are some of the laksas of Malaysia that are a must try:
Curry Laksa – Curry laska is also popular as Nyonya laksa. The Laksa is a perfect balance of flavours. The sweet, sour, spicy and sour elements go perfectly well the rice noodles, prawns, tofu puffs and fish meat. It is a coconut based laksa.
Bogor Laksa – The bogor laksa has a number of ingredients that are added to the soup. Right from chicken legs, shrimps, candlenuts, lemongrass, onion and garlic; all cooked in a coconut milk base.
Sarawak Laksa – A speciality of the Sarawak Island in Borneo, this laska dish comprises of coconut milk, tamarind and chicken stock for the base. Omelette strips, bean sprouts, along with prawn head and sambal belacan paste are the other ingredients used in this dish.
Asam Laksa – Penang Laksa or Asam laksa is a noodle soup in which tamarind paste is used as the base. Also, unlike the other soups, this dish needs prawn paste instead of whole prawn. Fish, rice noodles and tamarind paste, along with sambal are the main ingredients of this dish.
Terengganu Laksa – Also known as Bihun Thng Ang, it is the Terengganu version of laksa. Cooked rice noodles are topped with kesom leaves and mint. Then the broth made of fish stalk, asam java paste, belacan, onion, garlic and chillies is poured on top of the noodles.
Kelantan Laksa – Unlike all the other laksas, this eastern coast speciality is less spicy and served with generous amount of fish and thick rice noodles. Yellow ginger and mackerel gives this soup a distinctive colour. Also, freshly ground chilli paste is served separately on the soup, rather than cooking the broth with the same (making it less spicy).
Laksa is a complete meal by itself. It is a soup that is flavourful, filling and truly satisfying.