150 mls of a good Laksa paste, plus Vegetable oil, sesame oil, chopped onion, chopped garlic, thyme, veined cardamom leaves (very young), crushed coriander seeds, grated lemongrass, chopped chili, coconut cream, teaspoon tamarind dissolved in a little water, grated lemon zest, ginger finely sliced with a potato peeler, kiffir lime leaves, rice wine, fish stock, maybe Cointreau, or Triple Sec which is less costly.
I don’t use balarcen, but Malays would.Fish, scallops, prawns, mussels, clams.Gently fry the Laksa paste until fragrant, add more oil to fry all of the hotpot ingredients, then add the wine and fish stock, coconut cream, simmer.
If the chili is too strong, add tablespoon honey. Tastes good anyway.
This far may be cooked a day before, or maybe frozen.
Open the shellfish by steaming, discard ½ each shell, set aside. Peel the prawns, leaving the head attached. Slice the fish into strips.
Return the liquid to simmer heat, add the fish strips first, then prawns, scallops, with mussels/clams last. Before serving, add Cointreau.