The best laksa pastes are made in a big, heavy mortar, and are pounded with a pestle, a strong arm and about fifteen minutes to spare. Failing that, bung it all in the food processor.
Pound or blend the onion, ginger and garlic together. Roughly chop lemon grass. Drain chillies, squeeze dry and finely chop. Add lemon grass, chillies, nuts, belacan, laksa leaves, coriander, paprika, turmeric, cumin, sugar and salt and continue pounding for up to 15 minutes until you have a mushy paste. To turn the curry paste into a curry, fry it in a little oil until fragrant, gradually add some chicken stock and bring to the boil, then reduce heat and add some coconut milk. Gently poach whatever you want - chicken, fish, noodles, prawns - until cooked, and serve. See Vegetables with wing beans.
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