Curry Laksa with Tofu

Making your own laksa at home is easier than you think! This is flavorful, gluten free curry laksa with tofu is a great comforting dish for a cold day.

Curry Laksa with Tofu - a delicious, gluten-free dish to keep you warm in the winter! by Lisa Lin of Healthy Nibbles & Bits

Hello, friends! How many of your are still digging into your mashed potatoes and turkey from Thursday? As for me, I’m almost done polishing off Mama Lin’s classic sticky rice. Yes, sticky rice. It isn’t a true Chinese Thanksgiving without a rice cooker full of seasoned rice, and I’m okay with that. Much to my relief, I only had to cook for 11 on Thanksgiving, and Mama Lin took care of the turkey. That was a HUGE load off my back, I tell ya! She rocks my socks.

This was also the first time my family visited me at my new place, and I’m glad it passed Mama Lin’s inspection. She kept commenting that my house was so clean that she couldn’t find a single hair anywhere and that my kitchen was very organized. I scored so many “trophy Asian daughter” points that day. Maybe my clean house will distract her from nagging me about getting a “real lawyer” job. Hah!

Thanksgiving has come and gone, and chilly weather is finally settling in to Sacramento. I’ve dusted off the space heater, fuzzy boots, puffy jackets, and moccasins, which means I’m only half ready for the cold weather. I’ve been daydreaming about the curry laksa from Yotam Ottolenghi’s Plenty More for a long while, and the seemed like the perfect thing to make to help me deal with the brisk weather.

As I was cooking this, the lovely fragrances of soup base swirled around my kitchen, and it will make your kitchen smell wonderful, too. I know that the ingredients list looks lengthy, but it comes together very easily. All you need to do is blend ingredients to make a paste, boil the broth, and cook noodles. That’s it! And this laksa totally hits the spot on those frigid nights when you can barely feel your toes. So let’s grab some chopsticks, and get ready to slurp!

Curry Laksa with Tofu - a delicious, gluten-free dish to keep you warm in the winter! by Lisa Lin of Healthy Nibbles & Bits

Curry Laksa with Tofu - a delicious, gluten-free dish to keep you warm in the winter! by Lisa Lin of Healthy Nibbles & Bits
Curry Laksa with Tofu - a delicious, gluten-free dish to keep you warm in the winter! by Lisa Lin of Healthy Nibbles & Bits

Curry Laksa with Tofu - a delicious, gluten-free dish to keep you warm in the winter! by Lisa Lin of Healthy Nibbles & Bits

MASTERING MY MISTAKES / COOKING NOTES

  • Cook Rice Noodles Separately: I used to always make the mistake of cooking noodles in the soup. The noodles absorbed a lot of liquid as it cooked, and there wouldn’t be enough soup for my slurping needs. Don’t make the same mistake, and cook your noodles separately! If you are making the noodles ahead, I suggest keeping the noodles submerged in cold water until you are ready to serve the laksa. The noodles will stick together if you let them rest on your counter.
  • Adding Broccoli: I didn’t photograph it here, but I ate this with steamed broccoli, and it was amazing. The broccoli florets soaked up the laksa broth, and biting into them was a delightful flavor explosion.
  • Spice it Up or Down: This recipe will yield a pretty spicy laksa. Feel free to skip the Thai chilis or harissa if you don’t want that much spice.
  • Lemongrass Paste: I know that fresh lemongrass can be difficult to find, which is why I suggest using Gourmet Garden’s lemongrass paste. It comes in a tube that’s refrigerated, and lasts for a while. It’s great if fresh lemongrass is not readily available, or if you don’t have time to prep it. You should be able to find the lemongrass paste at a major supermarket. For those of you who are vegan, do note that this paste contains whey.
  • Time-Saving Tip: I made a quicker version of this recipe while I was in England, and simplified the curry paste for the broth. I blended a few tablespoons of a Thai red curry sauce, 1/2 cup diced red onions, 4 teaspoons of garlic paste, 4 teaspoons of lemongrass paste, 4 stalks of green onions, and 1 1/2 tablespoons of oil to create the paste. I cooked the paste on medium-low heat for about 5 minutes, then added broth and coconut milk. Although the original version was more flavorful, this quick and dirty version was quite tasty, too!

Curry Laksa with Tofu - a delicious, gluten-free dish to keep you warm in the winter! by Lisa Lin of Healthy Nibbles & Bits

If you try this recipe, be sure to share your creations with me! Tag me on Instagram or Twitter so that I can give you a fist bump!

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Curry Laksa with Tofu

Curry Laksa with Tofu - a delicious, gluten-free dish to keep you warm in the winter! by Lisa Lin of Healthy Nibbles & Bits

5 from 2 reviews

This curry laksa with tofu is perfect for those cold fall or winter days! Adapted from Yotam Ottolenghi’s Plenty More

  • Author:
  • Prep Time: 10 minutes
  • Cook Time: 30 minutes
  • Total Time: 40 minutes
  • Yield: 4 Servings
  • Category: gluten free, soup, noodles

Ingredients

  • 1/2 cup (100g) chopped red onions
  • 8 cloves of garlic, peeled and roughly chopped
  • 1 1/2 inch piece of ginger, peeled and sliced
  • 1/4 cup lemongrass paste (or 1/4 cup, 15g, chopped lemongrass)
  • 2 teaspoons ground coriander
  • 2 Thai chilis, sliced
  • 2 tablespoons harissa paste
  • 2 tablespoons safflower oil (any vegetable oil works)
  • 15 sprigs of cilantro (about 30 grams), chopped in half
  • 5 cups (1.2 liters) vegetable stock
  • 1 1/4 cups (300ml) can lite coconut milk (use full-fat coconut milk if you want a creamier soup)
  • 2 teaspoons curry powder
  • 2 tablespoons maple syrup (or any sweetener of choice)
  • 4 kaffir lime leaves (optional)
  • kosher salt, to taste
  • 4 to 8 ounces (115 to 225g) vermicelli rice noodles
  • 14-ounce (400g) package of medium-firm tofu, drained
  • 2 limes, sliced

Optional Toppings

  • 3 cups (300g) bean sprouts
  • julienned or shredded carrots
  • microgreens
  • black sesame seeds
  • sliced peppers

Instructions

  1. In a food processor, blend onions, garlic, ginger, lemongrass, coriander, chilis, and 2 tablespoons of oil together until a paste forms. Add the bottom halves of the cilantro and blend until it is incorporated. Save rest of cilantro for topping later.
  2. Heat a dutch oven or a large sauté pan over medium-low heat. Add paste and cook for 10 minutes, stirring frequently to keep the paste from burning.
  3. Raise the heat a little and add stock, coconut milk, curry, maple syrup, kaffir lime leaves and a teaspoon or two of kosher salt. Let broth simmer, partially covered, for 20 minutes.
  4. In a separate pot, bring 8 cups (1.8 liters) of water to boil. Be sure to add a few pinches of salt to the water. Once the water boils, add rice noodles and cook for 3 minutes. Drain noodles and rinse with cold water. If you are nearly ready to serve the laksa, divide noodles into bowls. If you are waiting at least 15 to 20 minutes before serving, keep noodles submerged in cold water to prevent them from sticking.
  5. Slice tofu block into 6 slices, lengthwise. Chop each tofu slice into 8 cubes. Set aside.
  6. When the soup is ready, fish out the kaffir lime leaves, if you’re using them. Add salt, if necessary.
  7. Divide noodles into bowls. Add tofu cubes and spoon soup into the bowls. Squeeze a tiny bit of lime juice over each bowl of noodles. Top with carrots, microgreens, sesame seeds, and sliced peppers, if you like.
  8. Store leftover noodles and soup separately.

Notes

NUTRITION INFORMATION: Makes 4 Servings. Amount Per Serving: Calories: 455, Total Fat 17g, Saturated Fat: 5g, Sodium: 181mg, Cholesterol: 0mg, Total Carbohydrate: 63g, Dietary Fiber: 4g, Sugar: 9g, Protein 12.6g

  1. If you want to serve the laksa as a small appetizer, I suggest cooking 4 ounces of noodles. However, if you want to make this into a main dish, I would cook about 8 ounces of noodles. There should be enough broth for both options.
  2. There’s nothing wrong with adding the bean sprouts straight into your broth. Blanching them helps take some of the raw bite off.
  3. This laksa will be a bit spicy. If you don’t want that much spice, take out the Thai chilis.

Disclosure: The link to Plenty More is an affiliate link, which means I earn a small commission if you decide to purchase the book through that link. This helps me keep the website going and pay for the groceries for these recipes! Thanks for your support! 

51 thoughts on “Curry Laksa with Tofu

  1. Ramona W
    What a delicious bowl of comfort soup... especially with the cold dreary day I have here. I like your tips... especially with putting the noodles in the bowl separately... I so dislike bloated overdone noodles that soak up all the yummy broth. :) You have a definite winner here. :)
    Reply
  2. Liz @ Floating Kitchen
    We have rice on Thanksgiving too (= Armenian thing). Everyone always thinks it's weird. But it's secretly my favorite thing every so I don't mind! Glad you passed inspection and your Thanksgiving was a success. This soup = I want to slurp it all up!
    Reply
  3. traci | vanilla and bean
    Oh yesss... I can see how warming and nourishing this bowl is.. I just wanna grab those chopsticks out or your hand model's hand! Hooray for passing inspection from Mama Lin.. the pressure was on my dear! And cooking for 11 is no small task - so good for YOU! I'm impressed that you already have something ready for us! Now, the spices.... I need to pick up some of that lemon grass as it is sometimes hard to find. I'm sure the paste is easier to work with as well. This looks soooo delicious, Lisa! Thank you my dear!
    Reply
  4. Izzy @ she likes food
    Haha, we did a huge deep clean of the house before the family came over too, but I bet there was probably still cat hair to be found somewhere! This tofu soup looks amazing and perfect for the cold weather we are having! So many delicious flavors :)
    Reply
  5. Diane
    This recipe is so interesting, believe my foodie world is about to expand! We will probaly eat it with meat around our house but the rest looks perfect for a couple of old timers looking for a bit of zestiness. I'm pretty sure I would love your mom!

    Reply
  6. Ann
    I love tofu and soup. I might make this over the weekend because it is raining cats and dogs here in Florida. Perfect timing!!!!

    Reply
  7. Lokness @ The Missing Lokness
    Since I am the first generation in the States and I am not that traditional, my Thanksgiving dinner is as American as it could be. :P But I do think it is awesome to have a little touch of Chinese flavors on Thanksgiving table. I am a huge fan of laksa. Big and bold flavor broth! This looks absolutely incredible! I think I can pull this off! I will try this soon. :)
    Reply
    1. Lisa Post author
      Haha, my family pretty set in their ways in needing at least some time of Asian flavors on Thanksgiving, so I would never be able to pull off a full traditional Thanksgiving dinner!
      Reply
  8. Pingback: Easy Coconut Curry Stir Fry Noodles with Glazed Tofu | Healthy Nibbles & Bits

  9. Willow
    Vegan and gluten free, oh yes! On my next shopping trip to the grocery store I will be getting lemongrass paste - yum! That is something I should always have in the pantry! (I have never used it, but I know it will go well in my recipes!)
    Reply

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