But not often…

Sometime towards the end of the month-long school break, my girl mentioned in passing that she likes curry laksa or curry mee, be it the nyonya curry laksa like the ones at the since-closed-down Singapore franchise outlets here…

328 Katong laksa
*Archive photo: 328 Katong laksa*

…or the ones commonly found in West Malaysia…

Curry mee
*Archive photo: curry mee at O&S Restaurant, Paramount Garden, PJ*

…or the ones up north with pig’s blood and cockles and all. We did have a stall at a coffee shop here once where they served pretty good curry mee but everytime I went there, I would go for their Penang Hokkien prawn mee instead as it was more to my liking but either they decided to call it a day or they moved elsewhere – to this day, I have yet to find out what exactly happened.

Left to my own devices, I decided to cook my own for her for lunch when she came home last Friday after her first week back in her school in the jungle. I had the RM40 a kilo prawns that I bought a couple of mornings earlier when I went strolling at the wet market at Rejang Park and I dropped by the supermarket near my house that stocks up on a lot of Singapore products and grabbed a box of this…

Prima Taste instant curry laksa paste

…made in Singapore. I got one from a friend once, way back in 2013 and I used it to cook what my mum called her sayur masak lemak, otherwise known as sayur lodeh, and yes, it was very very nice and when I first tried the curry laksa at that Singapore franchise here, the first thought that ran through my mind was that it tasted exactly like what my mum used to cook.

I remember seeing it at the aforementioned supermarket at the time, priced around RM16.00 only but when I went to buy it that day, the price had gone up to over RM23.00. Goodness gracious me! Ah well! I decided to go ahead with my plan, anyway.

My girl bought this packet of the sago version of the hung ngang or the big bihun

Sago vermicelli

…because it was gluten-free, no wheat in the ingredients…

Gluten-free

…and it had been sitting in the pantry all this while. I decided to give it a try and soaked it in boiling water for 1 hour according to the instructions at the back of the pack but it was still not soft enough by then so I boiled it a bit  and then, it was all right.

These instructions were at the back of the box and they enclosed this leaflet inside…

Instructions

…and I followed it to the letter.  I saw that bit about adding laksa leaves (the daun kesum that I have growing in abundance in my garden) but I only added a few for fear that my girl might be put off by the strong smell/fragrance and yes, I did add some tau hu pok (tofu puffs) in the broth – my girl loved those!

For the condiments, I boiled the prawns, around half of the number that I bought and used the stock for the broth/soup. I fried some tau kua (firm bean curd cake) lightly and sliced and I also boiled some quail eggs and blanched a bit of taugeh (bean sprouts). I put the vermicelli in a bowl and arranged everything on top before adding the broth and a bit of the tofu puffs and served…

My Singapore nyonya curry laksa 1

Yes, it was so very nice…

My Singapore nyonya curry laksa 2

…that my girl insisted on having what was left for her dinner and of course, I was mighty pleased that she enjoyed it so much, definitely worth all my effort in cooking it for her. I did not like the sambal cili that came in a separate pouch in the box though – it had that canned smell and taste, something like the sambal ikan bilis that comes in tins. I thought the laksa was good enough without it.

I don’t know if or when we will be having this…

My Singapore nyonya curry laksa 3

…again but for sure, if we should ever do so, it would not be all that soon and not too often either.

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