You have no idea how giddy I was when I found out this wonderful recipe for chicken laksa by Marion’s Kitchen. This curry noodle soup has been a thing for me since forever!! It was a delish, comforting staple when I was studying in Eugene, Oregon. The place that we always went to was called ‘China Blue’ – an Indonesian-Chinese place on the main street in front of the campus. I can still remember it so vividly. This small eatery was tucked upstairs. It was unbelievably cosy in a colourful hippy Eugene kind of way. It was one of our favourite places, the place where we always ordered the same thing every time. Yes, the chicken laksa.
But a bowl of laksa is not too common when it comes to my hometown of Bangkok. I tried to find a place that makes it years ago and came up with nothing short of a mediocre imitation of someone’s failed imagination or creativity, or tradition, or even a recipe. So this recipe by Marion was a true godsend. Thank you so much. But here in Bangkok and in my own kitchen, I tweaked it a little to fit my ability and time.
- A pack of sen lek (rice noodle), soaked
- A pack of two chicken breasts, poached and hand-shredded to hearty bite-sized chunks.
- Deep-fried tofu 1 pack, sliced.
- One cup of extra veggies, my usual choices include cauliflowers and beech mushrooms.
- Vietnamese coriander, or Pak Paew ผักแพว, or Persicaria odorata.
- A small can of coconut milk
- A pack of red curry paste (พริกแกงแดง) + a pack of yellow curry paste (พริกแกงกะหรี่)
Soy sauce, salt, green lime juice, toasted chilli in oil, toasted garlic in oil
STEP 1 >> Prepping
- I start by poaching the chicken breast. I do this first thing because it takes quite a while for the chicken to be cooked through and cool down to handle. In the pot along with water, I usually throw in some sprigs of cilantro roots, peppercorns, and sliced mature garlic to enhance the aroma of the chicken.
- Prep the tofu, mushroom, the Vietnamese coriander
- Soak the rice noodle
STEP 2 >> Cooking
- In a large nonstick pan, put in some vegetable oil, stir in the two packets of curry pastes, keep stirring until everything get aromatic and homogenous.
- Add the coconut milk. I usually add two extra cans of water (using that can of the coconut milk) to thin out the curry. Mix and make sure that all the pastes dissolve.
- Add the sliced tofu and mushroom and vegetables of your choices, let them all cook through.
- Season your curry with salt (not too much because we are adding the soy sauce later).
- In another pot, bring water to a boil. Add the soaked noodle, and let it cook through.
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This chicken laksa is created by my memories and a fortunate by-chance discovery of an easy recipe by @marionskitchen who cleverly uses a mixture of red curry paste (แกงเผ็ด) and yellow curry powder (แกงกะหรี่ ) to create a laksa paste reunion. In Bangkok, though, I found mixing 1:1 ratio of red curry and yellow curry pastes works pretty well. Chicken laksa was our date-days lunch in an Indonesian place near our uni back in the day. ❤️One thing that is always irreplaceable in this bowl is Pak Paew ผักแพว or Persicaria odorata or Vietnamese coriander. A hearty squeeze of lime, toasted chilli in oil, and also toasted garlic with oil add to the complete deliciousness.
STEP 3 >> Assembling + Eating 😀
- I am making this for two, so in each bowl, place the cooked noodle, shredded chicken, and the Vietnamese coriander.
- Ladle each bowl with the curry soup, make it hearty.
- Season the bowl with lime juice, chilli, and toasted garlic to taste.
That’s it! It’s so easy and truly delicious. This cured my laksa-sick for once! And with a recipe this simple, I can make it as often as I wish!