There are certain dishes which really feel like they nourish your soul – and this Vegetable Laksa is one of them. The Malaysian spices and flavours take you to a warmer place and there is something comforting about the creamy but clean soup-sauce.
Although this looks like it has a lot of ingredients don’t be put off, they can all be found in supermarkets. Because you blend the paste it is actually just a case of shoving in all the ingredients and blitzing it. And most of the veggies don’t even need peeling! You can use what you have to hand in the fridge, a brilliant way of using up smaller amounts of veg. So if you don’t have something in this list don’t worry – just sub in something else! This also means you can use up seasonal veggies too.
Vegan (if you leave out the fish sauce) and gluten free it’s a brilliant dish to make for friends and you can adjust the chilli heat to suit so it’s also brilliant for kids too. If you want to make it for the family then keep the chilli content of the paste low and provide chopped fresh chilli for everyone to add at the table. You could also add tofu, prawns, shredded meats too, whatever you have or fancy!
- 200g rice noodles, cooked according to the pack instructions
- 1 tablespoon oil (coconut or sunflower are best)
- 800ml vegetable stock
- 400ml can of coconut milk
- 4 spring onions, trimmed and peeled and cut into ½ inch pieces
- 1 tablespoon nam pla (Thai fish sauce) optional
- 1 carrot, made into ribbons using a vegetable peeler
- 60g mange tout
- 75g mini sweetcorn
- 1 small red pepper thinly sliced
- A handful of chopped coriander for garnishing
- For the sauce
- 4 small cloves of garlic
- 1 inch of root ginger, peeled
- zest of one lime
- juice of 1 ½ limes (serve the remaining half in wedges on the table)
- 1 stick of lemongrass
- 2 teaspoons ground turmeric
- 1 teaspoon brown sugar
- 1 small bunch of coriander
- 2 red chillis, seeds removed (add more if you like it hot)
- Step 1 Make the sauce by blitzing all the ingredients together in a blender (I use my Nutribullet) or food processor.
- Step 2 Fry off the resulting paste in the oil in a hot saucepan for a couple of minutes, stirring all the time.
- Step 3 Add the vegetable stock, coconut milk, fish sauce if using to the pan. Simmer on a low heat for 10mins.
- Step 4 Add all the vegetables and cook for another couple of minutes. You want the veggies to be slightly softened but still crisp.
- Step 5 Divide the noodles between bowls and then ladle over the sauce and vegetables. Garnish with more coriander and a wedge of lime, some fresh chopped chilli too if you want to add more heat.