So you want to make this awesome Katong Laksa?
Read on for the recipe…
Singapore Tourism Board (STB) knows only too well, the way to a traveller is via his or her expanding belly. Noodlies, Sydney food blog was in Singapore last September courtesy of STB. But tonight, my Singapore experience is local – on a warm Sydney Autumn evening, we’re whisked to a secret location to attend the School of Shiok!
According to the STB, “School of Shiok! is an invitation to discover the real Singapore… through its food, which is a unique blend of cultures from Chinese and Malay to Indonesian and Peranaka, developed by vicariously borrowing ingredients and cooking techniques from each other”. Shiok, of course, is Singlish (a mish-mash of local language and English) and is used to describe extreme pleasure and happiness most commonly associated with food. Amen!
STB, under the guidance of its Oceania Area Director, the tireless and stylish Sandra Leong (above), has been behind a string of innovative campaigns highlighting food as a delicious way to ‘Get Lost’ in Singapore. The frenetically popular Singapore Shiok food truck currently roaming the streets of Sydney is such an elegantly simple idea, it has you wondering why no one has thought of it earlier? Be quick if you want to catch it, Singapore Shiok food truck ends this Tuesday.
The School of Shiok! is another great initiative – learn to cook authentic Singapore dishes. The secret location turns out to be an expansive warehouse in Waterloo, extensively and colourfully transformed into an outdoor hawker-style food market. Our cooking instructor is a lively Ed Halmagyi (Fast Ed above) from Channel 7’s Better Homes and Gardens. And from our fun, secret location, we cook…
Actually, my partner, Walter cooks, I’m the kitchen hand, literally, as you can see in the noodlies video above. Cooking Katong Laksa with Fast Ed is fun and fast, the dish turns out looking and tasting shiok!
You can join the fun too. Just follow the simple recipe below.
Katong Laksa Recipe (developed by Ed Halmagyi)
Ingredients – serves 4
2 tbsp dried prawns, soaked in water
1/4 cup vegetable oil
1/2 cup rempah (recipe below)
400ml coconut milk
250ml chicken stock
24 prawns, peeled
24 clams, rinsed
3 cps thick rice stick noodles, broken into pieces
2 cups bean sprouts
1 cup tofu puffs, diced
2 hard-boiled eggs, halved
1/4 cup fresh laksa leaves finely sliced (also known as daun kesom, rau ram or Vietnamese mint)
Soak the dried prawns in warm water for 10 minutes, then pound in a mortar until crumbly then set aside.
Heat the vegetable oil in a wok over a moderate heat, then try the rempah for 3 minutes, stirring often, until aromatic. Add coconut milk, chicken stock and dried prawns then simmer for 2 minutes before adding the prawns and clams and turning the heat to low.
Blanch the noodles until just softened, then add to the soup with tofu and eggs. Blanch bean sprouts for 1 minute then refresh under cold water and place into bowls. Mix in the laksa leaves and season with salt, then ladle into bowls.
Rempah Spice Paste
Ingredients – serves 4
8 shallots, peeled (270g)
2 tsp (25g) Belachan (shrimp paste), roasted
3cm piece fresh turmeric, peeled
2 sticks lemongrass, sliced (white part only)
12 cloves of garlic
3cm piece galangal, peeled and chopped
2 long red chillies, seeded and chopped
10 dried red chillies, soaked and seeded
2 tsp chilli powder
2 tsp ground coriander seed
1 tsp ground star anise
20 laksa leaves
1/2 cup dried shrimp, soaked and drained
Combine all ingredients in a a food processor and puree until very smooth with 1/2 cup water. Store refrigerated and use within 1 week.
Noodlies and guest experienced the fun School of Shiok! courtesy of Singapore Tourism Board.