Monday, 14 January 2013

laksa king [flemington]

One of the hardest things about being a vegan from Penang living in a not very Malaysian Australian city (Melbourne why, all I do is love you and this is how you treat me) is how hard it is to find good (vegan) laksa. Perth, no problem! Penang, obviously no problem. Melbourne, why.

Anyway, all that is to say, I have been wanting to visit Laksa King in Flemington for a while now, having heard many good things about it, and when the opportunity arose Fi and I moseyed on over there and both ordered the vegetarian laksa, made vegan. While ordering the vegetarian laksa, with vegan option (this emphasis may be annoying but I promise it makes sense soon), we also ordered the fresh-made tofu with mushrooms and wolfberries (you may know them as goji berries), and I ordered a soya bean milk because I'm Malaysian and can't drink a Milo Ais or a teh tarik, which is the only way I could have been more Malaysian at that moment. 
least favourite soy milk

Sadly, they brought out my nemesis, Vamino soy milk, the only azn soy milk around that contains cow milk, and also incidentally tastes gross. Why a Malaysian place wouldn't serve Yeo's, basically the most SEAZN brand there is, I don't know. 

Then came the tofu fresh made on premises, and I knew. Oh, I knew. I stuck my chopsticks into that tofu and broke off a piece, and I knew. That fresh made tofu was egg tofu. Which was a shame, as we'd made such a point of ordering the vegan laksa that I didn't even think to check that the fresh tofu wasn't egg tofu. Saddest. 

The laksa was fine. There was my least favourite tofu (least favourite other than egg tofu, obviously), but lots of noodles and greens, and as is traditional I took most of Fi's noodles because she can't eat all the joyous carbs and she stole some of my soup, which was much less coconutty than hers. And I slurped my way through my noodles, piling them into my spoon and getting laksa everywhere, and laksa is like a little balm on my soul no matter its quality. But they were super coconutty laksas with no spice at all, though nicely oily, and in the end it was okay but nothing spectacular, and maybe if I was in the area again I'd try one of the other Malaysian places nearby, or default to Chillipadi across the street.

Ugh will no one make me an assam laksa?

Other reviews: Fi (on our visit); Cindy and Michael; Pip. Non-veggie meh agreement: the cooking capers.

Laksa King
6-12 Pin Oak Crescent
Get there on the Craigieburn train or the 57 tram. Ramp to get in, didn't check out the bathrooms. Mid-to-high price for a lunch ($9 something for the laksa, but $17 something for the tofu).


Veganopoulous said...

I'm seriously hanging out for vegan laksa as I've never have it before. As in, haven't had laksa since becoming vegan. Also, one of my favourite meals ever, pre-vegan, was the green curry from Nyonya (Lygon St). Pleeeeease let me know if there's a great vegan alternative in Melbourne!

Mel said...

It's very sad that the laksa didn't meet your expectations and annoying about the egg tofu! I haven't posted about our favourite local Malaysian restaurant yet, the default tofu they use is home made and contains egg but we already knew this before going vegan and because we eat there regularly all of the staff know not to serve it to us.

Where do you get vegan laksa in Perth??? I'm heading over there next month! Do you have any other food recommendations over there?

steph said...

Veganopoulous, my favourite place used to be Penang Affair in Fitzroy, which closed down about two years ago. It was awesome, they did an amazing CKT.

Mel I would like to hear about your local Malaysian place!

In Perth I get vegan laksa from either Utopia or Sri Melaka/Lotus, both are veggie places on James Street in Northbridge. Check out my WA tag on my blog, I really recommend Utopia, Annalakshmi (which I don't think I've blogged before), and Heavenly Plate. Where are you staying, why are you going? Have lots of fun!

Cindy said...

Oh, boo on the sneaky non-vegan ingredients. I have never heard of egg tofu before! Is it common?

Mel said...

Thanks for the Perth suggestions, I've been drooling over your WA posts today! It sounds like there are way more options than I will get to eat at in our 6 nights there. We are renting a dog friendly house in Cottesloe and then heading up north on a camping trip for a couple of weeks. My husband spent half his childhood in Perth so it's about time I actually saw it too!

I'll have to write a post about my local Malaysian place soon.

Anonymous said...

Have you tried the laksa at Loving Hut on Victoria St? Not sure how authentic it is but its huge, definitely vegan, packed full of flavour, and $10 :)

steph said...

Cindy egg tofu is quite common in Chinese cooking, usually as a separate dish (so you won't get egg tofu in a stirfry, for example). It's literally tofu that has been made with egg mixed into the soy milk before cooking.

Yay Mel! And you'll be there in time to go swimming at Cotts, aka my favourite beach in the entire world! I hope you have an awwwwesome time!

Hi east coast veg, yeah I know they've got laksa there and I have to get over there to give it a go!