No matter how hot a bowl of spicy Thai fish laksa is, I always have my way of enjoying and sweltering in the white soft noodle soaked in spicy zippy fish curry, then more and more will be added to my plate. Let’s not think about self-control, portion and weight for a second, this delicious noodle dish is so comforting and indulging that I go for as many times as my stomach can bear.
I bought Khanom Jeen (Thai noodle made from fermented rice) from Thailand. They are quite similar to Japanese Somen noodle with fragile thin white texture. They are best serve with curry as in my noodle with chicken curry sauce post or accompany hot papaya salad.
Traditionally, Khanom Jeen requires a long overnight preparation. But this package gives quietly satisfied result. You can also substitute Khanom Jeen with rice vermicelli or rice noodle whichever you have access to.
The smell of fresh Thai wild ginger and shrimp paste fiercely pervades from the ferocious bubbling curry. I remember how robustly delicious my mom fish curry was, the rustic curry was thin but fresh and flavorful with chucky codfish and its yellow roes floated on top.
I also love the relishing rich version using ground mackerel to thicken the curry. I pan grilled mackerel with some oil, carefully discarded the bones and pounded the meat in a mortar. You can used any kind of fish you like, and also you may grilled, roast, bake or cook it anyway before grind the meat to rough paste. The fish thickens the curry and muddles in the virile fragrances of Thai herbs. The strong deep flavoured curry beautifully cracks in the silky smooth noodle.
Khanom Jeen Nam Ya Pla (Spicy Thai Fish Laksa)
Ingredients (4 servings)
Rice noodle- cooked as per package instruction
300 gm mackerel (or any fish of your choice)- scaled and cleaned
4 dried red chili- deseeded and soaked in hot water
3 tbsp chopped Thai wild ginger (Krachai)
5 shallots- peeled and sliced
4 cloves garlic- minced
1 stalk lemon grass sliced
1 tbsp chopped galangal
1/2 tsp shrimp pasted
1 tsp sugar
1 tbsp fish sauce or to taste
Few spring onion or scallion- sliced into 1 inch long
1 tsp oil
- Cook noodle as per package instruction and keep aside.
- Pan roast mackerel in little oil until cooked, discard the bones and grind the meat into lumpy paste.
- Double wrap shrimp paste in aluminum foil and roast it over the medium flame for few minutes. Remove from the foil and keep aside.
- Add shallot, garlic, lemon grass, Thai wild ginger, galangal, chili and shrimp paste in food processor and grind until smooth paste.
- Bring 3 cup of water to boil, add the curry paste and ground cooked fish.
- Add sugar and fish sauce to taste. Simmer further for 3-5 minutes.
- Add spring onion and turn off the heat.
- Place rice noodle in the dish and pour in some fish curry.
Serve hot with some cabbage and sting beans for garnishing.
(More garnishing choices: bean sprouts, mints, Thai basil, cucumber, pickled cabbage, fresh vegetable of your choice)
Our Thai fish laksa was fresh, spicy and delicious. The strong aromatic scent of wild ginger takes over the steamy spicy bowl. It was intensely flavourful and pungent.
Yaseen stuffed spoonful after spoonful of the spicy noodle in his month follow with icy sweet drink after every bite. The heat was torturing for the poor boy, but the taste of it made him want more.
Have a beautiful day,