This week we bring you the Lobster Laksa Curry Noodles recipe from The Noodle Cookbook (coming soon to the USA). Learn how to make a deliciously fragrant laksa with lobster, homemade spice paste and loads of toppings and treat yourself to a luxury dinner.
Lobster Laksa Curry (Coconut Curry Noodles)
Serves 2 – Showing Off / One-Wok Wonder / Wok to wonderful in 30 minutes / Hero ingredient: turmeric
- 120–150g (4–5½oz) dried thin or medium rice vermicelli noodles
- 1 cooked lobster (350g–500g/12oz–1lb 2oz), or approx. 400g (14 oz) raw, shell-on prawns
- 400ml (14fl oz) boiling water
- 8 frozen queen scallops, or 3 king scallops, halved or quartered
- 1 tablespoon Mr Lee’s Healthy Mussel Sauce (page 24), or ready-made fish sauce
- 200ml (7fl oz) coconut milk
- 1 teaspoon dried chilli flakes
- 200g (7oz) bean sprouts
- 1 teaspoon honey or agave syrup
For the spice paste
- 2 anchovy fillets, finely chopped (from a jar)
- 1 onion, chopped
- 2 teaspoons ginger paste, or 5cm (2in) piece of fresh root ginger, finely chopped
- 2 garlic cloves, crushed and finely chopped
- 1 lemongrass stalk, finely chopped, or 2 teaspoons ground dried lemongrass
- 1 tablespoon freshly chopped cilantro
- 2.5cm (1 in) piece of fresh turmeric, finely chopped, or 1¼ teaspoons ground turmeric
- 1 teaspoon tamarind paste or pulp
- ½ teaspoon ground cumin
- ½ teaspoon paprika
- 5cm (2in) piece of cucumber, cut into batons
- 1–2 red bird’s-eye chillies, finely sliced
- small handful of fresh cilantro, or mint if you prefer
- small handful of bean sprouts
- lime wedges
1. Soak the rice noodles for 10 minutes in warm water, then drain and set aside.
2. Next prepare your seafood. This might get a bit messy – just embrace it! If you’re using lobster, firmly grip the head in one hand and the body in the other. Pull the head firmly away, then remove the legs and the rest of the shell from the meat. Rinse the meat and shells in cold water if you need to. The claws can be tricky little blighters, so you might need to use a nutcracker or hammer to break them open. Set aside the cooked tail and claw meat for later, making sure you’ve caught any bits of shell. If you’re using raw prawns, pull off the heads and peel the shells. You can add the heads and large pieces of shell to the spice paste at the next stage. Set aside the raw prawn meat to cook later.
3. To make the spice paste, place a large wok over a high heat and add the chopped anchovies and onion to the pan. Lower the heat to medium and fry for 2 minutes, until the onion has softened, then add the remaining spice paste ingredients to the pan, mixing well. Cook for another minute.
4. Next, add the lobster or prawn head(s) and large shell pieces (only use the large ones, as you’ll need to fish them out later). The shells will bring another level of flavour to your broth. Increase the heat to high and mix well. Then add the boiling water and bring to a simmer over a medium heat. Cook for 15 minutes. We’re looking to get as much flavour into that broth as we can.
5. After 15 minutes, remove all the pieces of shell and the lobster or prawn head(s). Then add the scallops, mussel or fish sauce, coconut milk and chilli flakes and bring the broth back to a simmer. Next add the lobster or prawn meat. Now add the cooked noodles, along with the bean sprouts and honey or agave. Mix it all up, remove from the heat and taste the broth. Adjust the seasoning, adding more fish sauce if you like.
6. To serve, divide the noodles, seafood and broth between two large bowls. Top each bowl with cucumber batons, sliced chillies, coriander (cilantro), bean sprouts and a wedge of lime. Grab your chopsticks and imagine yourself drinking in the sights, sounds and smells of Kuala Lumpur.