Sometimes it really is better to be late than never. For example, the first time I was going to meet my new boss I got stuck in a rain storm (it was Amber Rain, in my defense) and I arrived 45 minutes late. Mortified, and dripping from head to toe, I went in to meet him--and was greeted with a massive smile and a firm handshake. I'm glad I persevered through the downpour.
The same thing has happened with this laksa, a Malaysian and Singaporean curry soup. It was assigned as the Four Velveteers October challenge. But October felt like the deluge of Amber Rain in some ways, with our trip to the UK, mind-numbing jet lag, lesson observations, and just busy life in general. But at long last I made laksa, and it was welcoming like a warm handshake.
This is a lighter version of traditional laksa, with plenty of veggetables and a thin coconut curry broth. I chose to make it with less chicken than my recipe book specified, so feel free to adjust to your tastes.
Light Chicken Laksa
adapted from Eat Right for your Body Type by Anjum Anand
1 T vegetable oil
1 small or 1/2 large onion, thinly sliced
1 T ginger root, minced
2 fat cloves of garlic, minced
1/4 t turmeric
1 t ground coriander
salt and 1/2 t pepper
1 c (250 ml) chicken stock
1 large or 2 small pieces of chicken breast or thigh
1 to 1 1/4 c (250-300 ml) coconut milk
3/4 t garam masala
2 t lime or lemon juice, or to taste
180 g rice noodles (or other noodles), cooked according to package directions
200 g green vegetables of your choice (for example bok choy, broccoli, green beans, mangetout, bean sprouts), steamed
handful of mint leaves
Heat the oil in a large pan and then add the sliced onions. Cook until soft and golden, about 10 minutes.
Add the ginger and garlic and cook for a minute. Add the turmeric, coriander, salt, and pepper with a splash of water and coo for 3 minutes until the spices are aromatic.
Add the stock and chicken pieces, bring to the boil, and cook for 5 minutes until the chicken is cooked through.
Add the coconut milk and garam masala and simmer gently for 20 minutes.
Remove from the heat and add the lime or lemon juice.
Ladle some soup into bowls, placing the chicken on one side and adding the noodles on the other. Top with the steamed vegetables and mint leaves.
The 4 Velveteers was started by Alessio, Aparna, Asha, and Pam, who are passionate about different cuisines and food in general. Each month, we will attempt a new dish and share our experiences and the recipes we used. If you're interested in joining the Velveteers, please feel free to drop by our Facebook group.
Check out what the other Velveteers have come up with this month:
--Aparna's Vegetarian Curry Laksa
--Asha's Laksa Lemak
--Lindsay's Laksa Curried Moules Frites
--Alessio's Fragrant Almond Laksa with Oriental Crispy Prawns and Southern Italian Har Goa Dumplings