Bengali prawn curry
( SERVES 4 )
This prawn curry is considered a classic dish, and marinating seafood or meat with a combination of salt and turmeric is characteristic of Bengali cooking. I love how the complementary sweetness of the prawns and coconut is contrasted with the heat and pungency of the chillies and mustard seeds. Needless to say, very fresh prawns are essential for this recipe.
|½ tsp||Ground turmeric|
|400 g||Raw prawns, shell on|
|1 to taste||Salt|
|2||Onions, roughly chopped|
|2 cm||Fresh ginger, roughly chopped|
|3 cloves||Garlic, roughly chopped|
|2||Green chillies, deseeded and chopped|
|2 Tbsp||Vegetable oil|
|2 tsp||Mustard seeds|
|½ tsp||Chilli powder|
|4||Cardamom pods, green|
|1 can||Coconut milk|
- Shell and devein the prawns, leaving the tails on if you wish. Place them in a bowl with the turmeric and a pinch of salt.
- Mix well, then leave to marinate for 5 to 10 minutes.
- Meanwhile, put the onions, ginger, garlic and chillies into a food processor with 2 tablespoons of water. Blend to a fine wet paste.
- Heat the oil in a large pan. Add the mustard seeds, chilli powder, cloves, cardamom, cinnamon, bay leaves and whole chilli.
- Fry for 1 to 2 minutes until the spices become fragrant and the mustard seeds start to sputter.
- Add the wet paste to the pan and fry over a low heat for 12-15 minutes, stirring frequently.
- Add the coconut milk to the pan and bring to a simmer over a low heat.
- Add the prawns and simmer for 2 to 3 minutes, until they are opaque and just cooked through.
- Transfer to a warm bowl and serve immediately with warm Indian breads or rice.