Noodles with Sour Fish Sauce (Laksa Asam)

Noodles with Sour Fish Sauce (Laksa Asam)

Ingredients :

2 cups boiling water

3 tbsp tamarind

375g (3/4 lb) fish fillets

7 cups cold water

4 fresh red chilies

12 spring onions

1 tbsp sugar

1.5 tsp dried shrimp paste

2.5cm (1 inch) piece lemon grass, finely chopped

2 tsp fresh grated turmeric, or 3/4 tsp turmeric powder



250g (1/2 lb) thin rice vermicelli

250g (1/2 lb) fresh egg noodles, or thick rice flour noodles

8 shallots or 2 medium red onions, thinly sliced

1 ginger flower (optional)

1 small bunch fresh mint leaves

1 small bunch fresh basil leaves (optional)

Method :

Pour boiling water over tamarind and allow to stand for at least 15 minutes. Put fish fillets in a Saucepan, cover with cold water and bring to the boil. Simmer until fish is soft and flaky. Strain, reserving stock and fish.

Finely sliced or mince chilies and spring onions. Add to the fish stock with sugar, dried shrimp paste, lemon grass and turmeric. Bring to the boil, season with salt and pepper and simmer for 10 minutes.

Soak rice vermicelli in boiling water to soften. Soak egg noodles or thick rice noodles in cold water for 10 minutes. Drain, put into a Saucepan, cover with slightly salted water and bring to the boil. Reduce heat and cook until tender. Drain and rinse both lots of noodles. Divide noodles between six large bowls and top with flaked fish and sliced shallots or red onion.

Pour fish Sauce over noodles and garnish with finely shredded ginger flower (if used), sprigs of mint and sweet basil. Strain tamarind through a piece of muslin and serve tamarind juice in a jug, or pour over noodles before serving.

Serves 3-4

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