As I didn't have the seafood described in Janella's recipe and I wanted to eat it immediately, I used fish balls from the freezer and silken tofu I had in the fridge. Everything else was the same.


  • Paste

  • 2 dried chillies, roasted

  • 1 tsp coriander seeds, roasted

  • 2 tsp shrimp paste, roasted

  • 1 red onion, diced

  • 4 cloves garlic, chopped

  • 1 tsp lime zest

  • 1 stalk lemongrass, green part only roughly chopped

  • 1 tsp galangal, roughly chopped

  • 4 red chilles

  • ¼ cup macadamias

  • 1 tbls coriander roots and stems

  • 1 tsp turmeric powder

  • 1 tbls olive oil

  • 1 litre fish or vegetable stock

  • 2 tbls laksa paste (above)

  • 1 tbls tamarind paste

  • 1 pkt. silken tofu (UHT), large cubed

  • 8 fish balls (from chinese supermarket)

  • 4 small bundles of rice vermicelli, soaked in hot water

  • 1 tbsp fish sauce (maybe)

  • Garnish - vietnamese mint, bean sprouts, lime wedges quartered, spring onions cut on the diagonal


  • 1.

    Pound all the paste ingredients together in a mortar and pestle or use a food processor.

  • 2.

    In a soup pot add the stock, 2 tbls laksa paste and the tamarind paste and let simmer for a few minutes. Now add the fish balls and let it cook for a minute or two until it is cooked. Taste for seasoning. If you like it saltier then add some fish sauce.

  • 3.

    Drain your noodles in a colander and divide them between 2 bowls. Top these with half the fish balls and cubed tofu each. Pour the hot broth over and garnish (above).


Frozen fish balls are available from asian supermarket and UHT packet of silken tofu is available from the supermarket. I cut this iinto large cubes so that they don't break up.

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