This dish is inspired by humble local street food from Malaysia - one of the must-try foods when visiting northern Malaysia, especially Penang. Asam Laksa means 'sour laksa' and the broth's main ingredients consist of fish flakes, tamarind, spices such as galangal, turmeric, chilli, Vietnamese mint, and of course fermented shrimp paste, both in the form of block and sauce.
It has a very complex flavour profile, umami, brightness and natural sweetness - finished off with fresh pineapple, mint, cucumber, and ginger torch flower to give it a nice freshness. A nice bowl of laksa is all about balance of flavours.
The second dish is inspired by - sambal belachan paste with seafood, in this case scallop. A spicy paste made from fermented shrimp and toasted chilli, in contrast to natural sweet raw scallop slices.