May 28, 2012

Chicken Laksa

This Chicken Laksa recipe is another delicious creation from Simon Holst.  It is so quick, easy and full of flavour.  In fact, I don't think we have purchased a take out Thai meal since I came across this recipe.  It is THAT good!  And it's so easy that I'm actually blogging this recipe as I make it for dinner tonight.  Madeline loves it too.  I just add a little extra Coconut Cream to hers so it's not so spicy.  As usual I have made a few changes along the way to suit our personal tastes and I will note these as I go.

2 Tbsp curry power
3 Tbsp blanched almonds or roasted cashew nuts (I didn't have either the first time I made this so left them out.  It was so nice without them that I have never bothered to add them back in)
2-3cm piece fresh peeled ginger
2 cloves peeled garlic
1-2 tsp Thai red curry paste (optional but I always add it in)
Zest and juice of 1 lemon or lime (I've left this out on occasion if I haven't had one handy and it hasn't made any difference)
2 Tbsp water
2 Tbsp canola oil
3 cups hot water
3 tsp instant chicken stock powder
3/4 cup coconut cream (I use 1 1/1 cups otherwise it is too hot and spicy for kids to eat)
1 Tbsp fish sauce
300gm boneless, skinless chicken breast or thighs (I usually use 500gm as that is the volume I try to purchase my meat in)
1 medium carrot, cut into long stripes
100g spinch leaves, Asian greens or green beans (I use green beans as I always have them handy in the freezer)
400g fresh egg noodles (I use rice as I always have it on hand)
100g bean sprouts and chopped fresh coriander and/or spring onions to garnish (I skip this step)

Combine the first six (or seven if using the curry paste) ingredients in a blender or food processor (or mortar and pestle) and process to make a smooth paste.

Heat the oil in a large pot, then add the spice paste and cook, stirring continuously, for 1 minute.  Stir in the water, stock, coconut cream and fish sauce, then heat until boiling.

While the soup comes to the boil, cut the chicken in to thin strips or small cubes.  Drop the prepared chicken, carrot and green vegetables into the soup and simmer for 4-5 minutes until the chicken is cooked through.  (I usually simmer for about 15 minutes as I am terrified of undercooked chicken after a horrific food poisoning incident about 8 years ago).

While the chicken and vegetables are cooking, place the noodles in a large sieve and rinse them with boiling or very hot water to soften, the divide them between serving bowls.

Ladle the soup into the bowls, evenly dividing the chicken and vegetables between each.  Garnish with the bean sprouts, coriander and/or spring onions and serve immediately

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