Vietnamese-style spicy prawns
This recipe is really an excuse to use up some odds and ends from my last visit to the Chinese wholesaler. It was to be a barbecue dish but there is too much good sauce that would be wasted on a barbecue.
This was an absolute success. Glad I made detailed notes as this will be repeated. Spicy without being too hot, sweet, without being sickly, fragrant and very tasty. It's very quick to cook too. [piggy-pigs - we had this for 2 as prawns were 2 for 1!]
- 1 medium onion, chopped finely
- 2 tablespoons of ghee
- 400g king prawns, peeled and deveined
- 1 can of coconut milk
- 1 x 170g can 'Amocan' seasoned shrimp paste (Sambal Udang Kering)
- 2.5 cm fresh ginger root, peeled and julienned
- 5 cloves garlic, peeled and crushed
- Juice and zest of 2 limes
- 2 tablespoons of jaggery
- Splash of nam pla
- Splash of light soy sauce
- 1 teaspoon of crushed chipotles, including seeds. Not very Vietnamese, but added for the smoky flavour. The sambal is already quite hot
- 4 or 5 whole star anise 'flowers'
- Handful of spring onions, chopped
- Coriander leaves, chopped
- If the jaggery is hard, soften by adding a little water and microwaving for a few seconds.
- Mix the marinade ingredients together and whisk so the sugar is dissolved and combined into the marinade.
- Add the prawns, stir and refrigerate for 3 or 4 hours if you are able.
- Heat the ghee in a wok and fry the onions gently for 5 minutes.
- Add the prawns and marinade and heat for 5 minutes, stirring often.
- Pour in the coconut milk and heat for another 5 minutes.
- Serve sprinkled with chopped spring onions and coriander leaves.
Serve with plain boiled rice.
There is no need to peel ginger. As a result of attending a Thai cookery demo, we have learnt that peeling ginger is unnecessary unless for aesthetic purposes as the skin is high in fibre and full of flavour. However, do remove any bits that have become tough or woody.
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