Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Tickle Your Palate With Delicious Laksa

A perfect combination of numerous ingredients and condiments, Laksa – a popular spicy noodle soup has become the latest attraction for foodies in Malaysia. The name of the dish originates from the Sanskrit word ‘laksha’ meaning ‘a lot’ which aptly refers to the numerous ingredients that create the magic in it.

Laksa has even attained an international standard with Hollywood actor Mel Gibson declaring it as one of his favorite dish. He also claims to be able to prepare this Malaysian dish. The dish was originally a simple village dish, which has now graduated to featuring on the menus of the five-star hotels. It combines the perfect Chinese and Malay cultures found in Malaysia and can be categorized in two types- the curry laksa and the asam laksa. The noodles are usually made from rice. There is also a distinct variant, called ‘laksam,’ from Kelantan, where the gravy is made from coconut milk mixed with fish fillet. Served when hot, it is a ‘must-eat’ dish when one is visiting places such as Kedah, Pulau Pinang, Johor, Kelantan and even Sarawak.

To attract more tourists to the resort island, The Langkawi Development Authority (Lada) organized a three-day Langkawi International Laksa Carnival (Lilac) last month. Malaysia’s local delicacies have a pull factor that attracts tourists. A report has revealed that Malaysia’s food and beverage sector contributed 17.2 per cent of the income generated by the tourism sector last year. The tourism ministry has organized various food-based carnivals, including the Fabulous Food 1Malaysia event, as a platform to promote exotic local dishes among foreign visitors. Usually the food spread include delicacies such as rendang, traditional cakes, lemang, satay (grilled meat on skewers) and other items, but during Lilac this year, the focus was on laksa, and not on other delicacies.



The inaugural event of the Laksa International Carnival was a gathering of laksa connoisseurs who came to dish out laksa from Pahang, Pulau Pinang, Perlis, Kelantan, Sarawak, Langkawi and Thailand. It was an initiative to feature Langkawi among the top 10 tourism destinations of the world by 2015. Laksa has been adapted and suited to various international flavors, even though the basic ingredients remain the same. The three-day carnival staged at Laman Padi was hosted by Chef Redzuawan Ismail, popularly known as ‘Chef Wan’; which attracted more than 15,000 visitors. The event showcased various types of laksa, and included laksa-making and laksa-eating competitions.




Attracting all the foodies’ delight, laksa is sure to achieve a special tourist attraction from all over the world and promote Langkawi’s tourism in a unique way.

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