Since I have been blabbering about Asam laksa non-stop for about a month straight, I thought it would be appropriate to provide you with an Asam laksa recipe at long last. Asam laksa is a mix of Malay and Chinese cuisine, a noodle soup that is traditionally made with fish. It is widely available in Malaysia, Singapore and in some parts of Indonesia. I have sampled several variations on the laksa, most of them made with a creamy coconut broth, but my favourite was the sour broth variant we found on Penang Island: the Penang Asam Laksa, a unique and complex blend of spicy, sweet and sour flavours. And so the hunt for a vegetarian Asam Laksa recipe began.
As you might have guessed from the number of blog posts that are already piled up here about Bali, I absolutely love it. A LOT. And for many reasons. The one I’ll be discussing today is Jamu, this traditional Indonesian medicinal drink that looks a bit like mango juice and that you might have seen popping up on several warung menus or in baskets on the head of the Jamu Gendong, these women roaming the streets selling their precious potions to the locals every morning. So what is Jamu and how do I make a Jamu drink?
This week I noticed corn was finally in season. Hurray! I love me some corn on the cob! And next to that, I love me some vegan corn chowder!
I decided to bring back an old favourite of mine and one of my first ever blog posts back from 2010 (would you believe Mostly Amélie is nearly 10 years old?) This recipe conveniently makes around two tons of soup, perfect for the chilly autumn days ahead.
I took a cooking class at The Thai Farm Cooking School in Chiang Mai, Northern Thailand. The main reasons why I picked this specific school over all the other ones is because they offered the opportunity to veganized everything on the menu and because their farm is fully organic. I had an amazing day, made all of the vegan Thai curry recipe, and met tons of other fun, food-loving travellers! I can’t recommend this day out enough if you happen to be in Chiang Mai.
Travelling to South East Asia doesn’t exactly go hand in hand with following a vegan diet in many people’s eyes. And with good reason : walk around Bangkok or Hanoi and you are likely going to see big cauldrons of pig’s rectum soup and duck beak stew simmering on the road side with sides of congealed blood and fried goat stomach. And unfortunately I am not actually joking. But take a bit of a better look past the grotty and grim, and you’ll soon find that there is a wide selection of food for the vegan and health conscious all around. Happy Cow is a great place to start your hunt for healthy grub, but just a poke around the market will reveal delicious and unexpected surprises.
The food in Cambodia was nowhere near as good as the food in Thailand, and the vegan options were also a lot more sparse. We had our fair share of rice and noodles with vegetables, and quite a few incidents of unsolicited eggs. One thing I realized early on in Cambodia is that, no matter how vegan something appears to be on the menu, always specify no egg or you might end up with a surprise. That being said, we did have some amazing food in Cambodia. From baguette, to durian, to tofu amok (a mildly spicy, coconut-heavy curry), to mango salad, we had some lovely exotic food – most of the time 😉
I have a terrible confession to make. I was never fat. There. It’s out. I have no amazing before/after illustrated story on how I became healthy and slim. My story is more one of a lazy-skinny-pot-smoking-couch-potato, I’m afraid; it’s not as golden and glorious. I’ll only say it once (because my mom reads my blog, as if she never knew!).