Penang Asam Laksa at Joo Hooi Cafe, Malaysia

Spicy Asam Laksa (Penang Mackerel Noodles)

by Joo Hooi Cafe, Penang, Malaysia

The asam laksa that you can find in Penang is quite different from other types of Laksa served in different parts of Malaysia. This laksa is a spicy and sour soup made with tamarind (the "asam" part of the name), shredded mackerel, chilies, cilantro, and all sorts of herbs and veggies.

asam laksa in Penang, Malaysia

We bought a bowl of asam laksa from the Joo Hooi Cafe, which despite its name, is not a coffee shop, but rather a small local food court. You can find the Joo Hooi Cafe just outside the city's most famous Chendol stand, and (though it's a controversial thing to suggest), they claim to serve Penang's best asam laksa.

Joo Hooi Cafe, Penang, Malaysia

Asam laksa, despite being made with mackerel, is hardly fishy. It has a rich, savory, meaty, umami flavor, and the thick soup is slightly sour and tangy from the tamarind which is what makes Penang's laksa iconic. The soup is topped with pineapple slices, thinly sliced fresh onion, and lots and lots of hot chilies. 

Penang specialty asam laksa (mackerel noodle soup with herbs and spices)

S - 5.50 ringgit ($1.30)
L - 6.00 ringgit ($1.42)

Dietary Notes
🌶️ Spicy

Joo Hooi Cafe

Other great food in Penang that you'll love