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Malaysian Recipe : Penang Laksa

This is a one-dish meal.

Serves 8 to 10


  • 2 kg fresh thick vermicelli
  • 1 kg fish (preferably tuna or mackerel)
  • 6 tbsp prawn paste (heh koh) mixed with ¼ cup water
  • 20 cups water
  • 8 pieces asam gelugur
  • 30 stalks sweet basil leaves
  • 2 stalks bunga kantan, sliced finely
  • 6 tbsp sugar
  • 2 tbsp salt

Grind to paste:

  • 1 clove garlic
  • 1 tbsp shrimp paste
  • 35 dried chilies
  • 3 cm fresh turmeric
  • 10 stalks lemon grass
  • 500g shallots


  • 1 pineapple, shredded
  • 3 cucumbers, shredded
  • 1 bunch mint leaves
  • 250g large onions, sliced into rings
  • 12 red chilies, sliced
  • Limes, halved


  1. Boil fish in a saucepan with 20 cups water and asam gelugur until cooked.
  2. Remove fish and flake. Return fish to the boiling stock and add ground ingredients, sweet basil leaves, bunga kantan, sugar and salt. When mixture thickens, remove from heat.
  3. Blanch rice vermicelli and divide into individual bowls.
  4. Top with portions of pineapple, cucumber, mint leaves, onion and chilies. Pour boiling gravy on top and spoon some of the prawn paste mixture over. Serve with sliced lime.

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Last Modified: 11/27/11.