Spice up your life with this mouthwatering Malaysian Laksa recipe

Edinburgh chef Hannah Innes travels the world looking for fresh inspiration for new and exciting cooking. Here, she presents the first of her new recipe recommendations for WOW. 

In need of spicing up your life? Well she’s got just the thing…

I am such a lover of Asian food.

I believe in simple and healthy great dishes, but I don’t think you can take it easy with this cuisine. It’s all about packing a punch, conjuring up food that can really sort you out if you’re feeling down.

And there’s where the Malaysian Laksa comes in.

This is the sort of soothing food your granny would give you if you’re sick; only a little less ‘Nanny McFee’.

I’ve taken some of my favourite ingredients and put them in this dish. I think these are the core ingredients to use for Asian cooking, and you just cannot beat the flavour and colour.

It’s a really healthy and delicious meal you can make any day of the week; packed with so much goodness, but also very light on the stomach.

Ingredients (serves 4)

200g rice noodles
200ml light coconut milk
1 litre chicken stock (or veg stock)
200g peeled, uncooked prawns
100g pak choi bottoms trimmed, but left whole
150g tofu, cubed
50g beansprouts
Bunch spring onion, julienne (sliced very finely, lengthways)
1 tsp each cumin and coriander seeds (ground)
1 tsp ground cumin
1 tsp ground coriander
1 tsp garam masala
1 tsp turmeric
1 white onion, finely chopped
1 tbsp minced fresh ginger
1 tbsp minced garlic
1 lemongrass stalk, crushed with a knife
2 curry leaves, crushed
2 kaffir lime leaves, crushed
1 lime, cut into quarters
1 red chili, sliced very finely
Bunch fresh coriander to serve


How to make it

1. Start by frying off the cumin and coriander seeds in a pot, over a high heat.

2. Add the chopped onion, and reduce heat to low. Cook until soft. This should take around 5-10 minutes, depending on how finely you chopped the onion.

3. When the onions are soft to touch, add the spices, ginger and garlic. Cook for 3-4 mins, until the onions are fully covered in the spices, and the pot starts to get a bit sticky.

4. Add the chili and fry for 2-3 mins until it has softened a bit.

5. Add the curry and kafer leaves.

6. Add the coconut milk and stock.

7. Bring to the boil, and simmer for 5 minutes, stirring occasionally, then add the pak choi and prawns.

8. Cook noodles following pack instructions and set aside.

9. Cook the laksa until the prawns have turned pink and are fully cooked through.

10. Divide the noodles, tofu, and beansprouts between 4 bowls. Spoon over the laksa, and serve with fresh spring onion and coriander leaves.

You may think when you read this that 10 steps is a lot, but trust me it’s very quick and simple. This is definitely one of my favourite meals to have – try it!

Hannah Innes has been a chef for around three years. Having worked in hotels and restaurants, she has now built her own business as a private chef, based in Edinburgh.

You can visit her blog here, and follow her on Facebook


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