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Malaysian Curry Laksa Recipe (Kari Laksa)


I grew up in Malaysia, where I enjoyed cooking and eating local dishes every day.

The signature feature of this dish is the creamy, sweet, and spicy broth.

The signature feature of this dish is the creamy, sweet, and spicy broth.

What Is Kari Laksa?

For those who never heard of kari laksa, the dish is similar to curry noodles, but there are some differences in the ingredients, especially the paste. Kari laksa is a typical Nyonya or Peranakan curry noodle dish, created through a blending of Chinese and Malay elements.

What Is the Main Ingredient?

This fragrant, spicy, and sweet broth with noodles, shrimp, and egg is a very popular dish in Malaysia and Singapore. The main component of kari laksa is the paste, which includes dried red chilies, lemongrass, galangal, turmeric, shallots, garlic, and belacan (shrimp paste).

I chose to use a store-bought curry paste for convenience and ease of preparation. If you're willing to do extra work, you're welcome to make the paste from scratch. But I'm going to show how to prepare this dish by using a store-bought paste. It's a shortcut, but you'll still get the authentic flavor.

So Satisfying!

Kari laksa is a flavorful dish that never fails to satisfy my appetite. It had been too long since I had this dish, so I was very happy to make it for my husband while we were in Malaysia last year. He had never had the chance to try it before. He loved the rich flavor of the broth, and immediately he began asking for more!

Let me show you how you can make this delicious dish at home for your family. I hope you'll like it as much as we do!

Cook Time

Prep Time: 10 minutes

Cook Time: 30 minutes

Total Time: 40 minutes


  • 2 (5.6-oz) packets yellow noodles
  • 150 ml coconut cream
  • 1/2 pound shrimp, deveined
  • 1 (200-gram) packet curry laksa paste (see photo below)
  • 1 (85-gram) packet medium-firm tofu, sliced into cubes
  • 1 bunch mint leaves, for garnish
  • 1 cup bean sprouts, rinsed
  • 1 hard-boiled egg
  • Cherry tomatoes (optional)
  • Oil for frying


  1. Heat the cooking oil in a wok or a large pan over medium heat.
  2. Place the tofu into the pan gently, using tongs, to avoid splashing oil.
  3. Fry the tofu, flipping each piece every 2 minutes. Cook until the pieces turn golden brown.
  4. Transfer the fried tofu into a plate with a parchment paper to absorb the excess oil. Set aside.
  5. Fill a large round pan with 1 1/2 liters of water. Bring the water to boil.
  6. Add the curry paste into the boiling water. Stir with a spatula to combine.
  7. Add the coconut cream and the shrimp. Stir with a spatula to combine.
  8. Let the broth simmer for 15 minutes. Turn off the heat.
  9. In a serving bowl, place the noodle, fried tofu, hard-boiled egg, bean sprouts, tomatoes, and mint leaves.
  10. Pour the broth into the bowl. Don't forget the shrimp!
  11. Serve immediately.

© 2020 Liza


Liza (author) from USA on August 11, 2020:

I have had tofu many times in Malaysia, but it was my first time having it in America. I thought it was funny as I saw many stores here selling tofu as it is recognized as a plant-based food and suitable for a vegan to eat.

Liza (author) from USA on August 11, 2020:

After missing my trip to Malaysia earlier this year, I had to find a way to stop my craving for Malaysian food. I was lucky to find the paste at the Asian store. The shortcut way was not as disappointing as I still tasted the authentic taste of the dish.

Liza (author) from USA on August 11, 2020:

You're welcome, Abby. There is no Asian restaurant at least in Utah that serves this dish. However, I'm happy to find the paste at the Asian store and cooked curry laksa for my husband.

Liz Westwood from UK on August 11, 2020:

This is an interesting and well-explained recipe. It's many years since I last tried tofu.

Linda Crampton from British Columbia, Canada on August 10, 2020:

This sounds like another very flavorful dish. I'm going to look for curry laska paste. I think it would be very tasty.

Abby Slutsky from America on August 10, 2020:

I have never had this dish, but if I can find the paste, I am going to try it. Thank you for sharing.

Liza (author) from USA on August 10, 2020:

Hi Danny, it was delicious! We love the broth of curry laksa. It was a signature of the dish. Thank you for commenting.

Liza (author) from USA on August 10, 2020:

Hi Peggy, I'm sure you can find the curry paste at the Asian store. The store probably provides different brands but, any brands will do! By the way, the dish is perfect for cold weather. I cooked it last weekend because I wanted my husband to try it. He liked it a lot. So, comes fall season, I'll be cooking this dish often.

Danny from India on August 10, 2020:

Oh, what a wonderful combination Liza. Sweet & spicy.

It must taste delicious.

Peggy Woods from Houston, Texas on August 10, 2020:

I have never tasted this combination of flavors, but it looks and sounds delicious. We have some Asian stores where I could probably find this curry laksa paste. Thanks for the recipe.

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