Monday, July 14, 2008
A third or half a packet of laksa paste (depending on how spicy you want this dish to be)
About 12 fresh tiger prawns, shell-on
2 rolls of fishcake, sliced
2 cups risotto
250ml coconut milk
How to make Laksa Risotto
This is a really easy recipe as long as you can get your grubby mitts on a packet of laksa paste, which is available at all local supermarkets (if you’re overseas, it should be available in Asian supermarkets). It’s lovely and rich, and translating the heartiness of laksa into a new medium that has a different texture somehow makes the flavours really pop up. I wish I thought this up when I was living overseas because it’s the kind of thing I would have loved to nosh on when it was 5 degrees outside!
Anyway, here we go:
1. Peel the prawns, and dump the heads into a pot with the coconut milk and the water. Bring it to a boil.
2. Add the laksa paste, and let the broth simmer for about ten minutes. Important note: the consistency of the broth should be slightly gravy-like but still watery. If it’s too milky, the risotto will become too rich and gooey (unless you want it really mushy!). Add salt to taste.
3. In a large skillet or wok, fry the risotto with a good glug of olive oil until the grains start turning translucent. Then pour a third of the broth into wok, stir well, and bring to a boil. Stir again, bring down the heat to a simmer, and cover.
4. Here comes the slightly troublesome part: keep stirring every two or three minutes to make sure the risotto doesn’t stick to the bottom. When the liquid level seems to go down, add broth by the ladlefuls until the risotto is submerged. Keep doing this until the risotto is about half cooked (soft but still has a hard bite to it). Depending on how strong your fire is, this should take between 10 to 15 minutes.
5. Toss in your prawns, beansprouts and fishcake, and stir well. Add broth if the liquid level goes down. Continue cooking until the risotto achieves that nice slightly creamy texture and has a soft but not too mushy texture, and the ingredients are cooked through.
6. Turn off the fire, add the spinach and stir well - the greens should wilt in a matter of minutes in the remaining heat. Serve in nice big bowls, and enjoy!