Category Archives: Prawns/Shrimp

Grilled Prawns with Herbs and Chillies

For all the prawn lovers out there!

Grilled Prawns with Herbs and Chilli, simple and delicious - thespiceadventuress.com

Personally, I find prawns the easiest yet the most indulgent seafood to cook and eat. Not just for the fact that it cooks super fast but also for its ability to absorb all sorts of flavours in minimal time. Agreed, prawns are slightly more expensive when compared to your regular fish fillets, but there’s so little you need to do to it for a delicious dinner on your table in no time at all.

In our home, prawns are most often cooked for mid week dinners. And that’s because, by Wednesday, I get into the when’s the weekend coming mode and I really need something to get me going. Sometimes, it’s a nice glass of wine or perhaps a late night movie (for which I curse myself the next day morning) and sometimes, it’s an indulgent plate of food. And prawns fit perfectly in that mid week indulgent category.

While I need that mid week luxury, I am not willing to work too hard for it. So today’s recipe, grilled prawns with herbs and chillies is just perfect.

Grilled Prawns with Herbs and Chilli, simple and delicious - thespiceadventuress.com

All you really need for this dish is a bunch of herbs, which makes it also a good dish to use up leftover herbs that let it go bad in the refrigerator. When I have an excess amount of herbs (I grow quite a few at home), I usually chop it all up finely, mix with a generous amount of olive oil and freeze for future uses like this dish. So that’s another tip for you!

So that’s it really, mix the prawns with the herb oil emulsion, a touch of chilli flakes to spice things up and then grill it. Top it over a big bowl of salad or a quick rice or noodle stir fry for a delicious and indulgent midweek dinner.

Grilled Prawns with Herbs and Chilli, simple and delicious - thespiceadventuress.com

Ingredients:

  1. 350gms tiger prawns; deshelled (leave tails intact) and deveined
  2. 1-1 ½ tsp chilli flakes (adjust to heat preferences)….

This post is brought to you in collaboration with Supreme Seafood, so head over to their website for the full recipe.

Grilled Prawns with Herbs and Chilli, simple and delicious - thespiceadventuress.com

Chilli Prawn Fried Rice

My love for markets is legendary, especially the local one in my suburb (Dandenong) which I would have mentioned on my blog at least a million times.

Looking back, I think it’s destiny that bought us to this suburb. Amidst all the confusion, loneliness and that strange feeling of newness in a foreign country, it was the local market here that was my refuge. The smell, sights and sounds always reminded me of home because I would get every single ingredient that I needed for my style of cooking which means a lot when you are so far from home. And it’s true that food opens doors where none exists. And for me that door was this blog…..

These days, I don’t visit the market as often as I used to but I am still there at least once every fortnight. It’s my space to get inspired and to re-ignite the creativity and passion I have for food. All the beautiful, fresh produce gives me such a buzz and there are so many ideas that pop into my mind after a trip like this.

And with Christmas almost here, markets are just brimming with such amazing produce and I simply couldn’t go past the seafood section. I had to come back with some fresh Australian raw prawns; don’t waste your hard earned money buying prawns from other countries when you can get some amazingly fresh and delicious prawns caught right here in Australia. Believe me, it’s totally worth those few extra dollars.

After all the shopping, I was only in the mind for a one pot dish and nothing elaborate. And this delicious Indo Chinese style prawn fried rice is what came to mind.

Chilli Prawn Fried Rice - a simple and delicious one pot Indo Chinese style fried rice - thespiceadventuress.com

The Indo Chinese style fried rice is quite different from the traditional Chinese version. It’s a lot more fried where the grains of rice are separate unlike the sticky original version. I wanted a bit of a spice kick and used long dry red chillies for smoky hot undertones.

To get the flavour from the dry red chillies, add it to the cold oil and then heat on low flame. Toss in the prawns with a handful of different vegetables along with perfectly cooked rice and finish off with a dash of soy and tomato chilli sauce.

Chilli Prawn Fried Rice - a simple and delicious one pot Indo Chinese style fried rice - thespiceadventuress.com

Chilli Prawn Fried Rice - a simple and delicious one pot Indo Chinese style fried rice - thespiceadventuress.com

Ingredients:

  1. 400gms long grained rice
  2. 500gms medium sized prawns; deshelled and deveined
  3. 1 large carrot; julienned

This post is bought to you in association with Supreme Seafood so the complete recipe can be found here.

Chilli Prawn Fried Rice - a simple and delicious one pot Indo Chinese style fried rice - thespiceadventuress.com

Chilli Prawn Fried Rice - a simple and delicious one pot Indo Chinese style fried rice - thespiceadventuress.com

Mexican Prawn Tacos with Mango Salsa

Looking at the title, are you wondering where the hell did I find ripe mangoes?

This recipe was developed for a client a while ago when mangoes were in season but I somehow never got around to sharing it with you guys. And since we are moving homes this week, I thought of making these tacos again since I had some leftover prawns in the freezer. That’s when it struck me that I haven’t shared these awesome tacos with you, so here we go – Mexican Prawn Tacos with Mango Salsa.

Mexican Prawn Tacos with Mango Salsa - easy and delicious - thespiceadventuress.com

The star of these tacos is ofcourse the prawns that has been cooked in a rich Mexican style tomato sauce with oodles of flavour. All the ingredients are pantry and refrigerator staples, nothing fancy at all. Just get your hands on fresh local prawns and the job is done. Any type of salsa may be used; the mango salsa was a delicious addition because of the sweetness which balanced out the spice kick from the paprika in the prawns.

Mexican Prawn Tacos with Mango Salsa - easy and delicious - thespiceadventuress.com

Mexican Prawn Tacos with Mango Salsa - easy and delicious - thespiceadventuress.com

Not going to keep you longer with small talk today…I am plainly tired from all the packing, cleaning and scrubbing going on so I promise we will talk more when I have finished with all the moving stuff.

And if you love tacos, then you need to check out this one too.

Ingredients:

For the prawns:

  1. 300 gms large prawns; deshelled and deveined
  2. 2-3 tbsp olive oil
  3. 1 small red onion; finely chopped

For full recipe, click here.

Mexican Prawn Tacos with Mango Salsa - easy and delicious - thespiceadventuress.com

Mexican Prawn Tacos with Mango Salsa - easy and delicious - thespiceadventuress.com

Recipe developed, styled and shot for Supreme Seafood.

Squid, Prawn and Saffron Stew

Saffron – the posh spice!

Delicate strands of orange red hues that always evoke a sense of decadence and indulgence in my heart. A sense of luxurious mystery that transports me to far off exotic destinations like Persia, Spain and Kashmir.

Saffron - food photography - thespiceadventuress.com

Yes Kashmir – the Paradise on Earth, so much a part of my native country yet one which feels so distant to me. The wide expanse of breathtaking saffron fields is one I dream of and the desire to experience something like this is right on top of my bucket list.

Saffron or Zaffran (as known traditionally), is no doubt precious but what’s more precious for me is a dear friend who gifts me the best saffron from Kashmir. Supriya (or S, as I sometimes call her on my blog) is a friend who truly understands what food means to me. Beyond all the pictures and recipes, she understands my passion and the meaning that this blog has in my life.

And she is also the person who gets me authentic and traditional Kashmiri recipes like this Roganjosh, which you must try out. Nothing like the ones that you would find in most Indian restaurants and takeaways.

So before heading over to the recipe, taking a moment to say a huge thanks to S, for being a wonderful friend and my foodie partner in town.

Saffron always reminds us of decadent Indian sweets or the elaborate biryani preparations. But it need not be so; the unique flavour of saffron pairs beautifully with seafood too, delicious examples of which we can find in Meditteranean and Italian cuisine.

Today’s dish is a Squid, Prawn and Saffron Stew, inspired by Italian flavours.

Squid, prawn and saffron stew - an indulgent, rich and delicious seafood stew with saffron - thespiceadventuress.com

A rich, hearty and delicious seafood stew with fresh prawns and squid rings; this dish will make you look at saffron in a whole new light. Perfect for the weather, this warm and comforting stew has a rich tomato base, a hint of spices and the all too indulgent flavour of the saffron. And being a seafood stew, this one gets ready pretty fast which is exactly what you need for a midweek treat.

Spoon it over fragrant jasmine rice or mop it up with good quality artisan bread, this is one recipe you will want to make over and over again.

Bread - foodphotography - thespiceadventuress.com

Squid, prawn and saffron stew - an indulgent, rich and delicious seafood stew with saffron - thespiceadventuress.com

Ingredients:

  1. 300gms medium sized prawns; deshelled and deveined
  2. 300gms squid rings
  3. 4-5 tbsp olive oil

Find the full recipe here.

Squid, prawn and saffron stew - an indulgent, rich and delicious seafood stew with saffron - thespiceadventuress.com

Disclaimer – Recipe developed, shot and styled for Supreme Seafood. 

Vietnamese Prawn Spring Rolls (with Sweet n’ Spicy Dipping Sauce)

The looong Easter weekend is finally over and it’s back to work today. Well, not quite for me as the little fellow is at home for his term break. So technically, the holiday mood continues…

Last term holidays, Adi handed out invitations to his friends for play dates without asking me. So I found myself caught in completely unprepared situations having to think on the spur for interesting snacks to feed the brood. Though eventually that play date fell upon another mom’s shoulders, I didn’t want a repeat of that scenario this time too so decided to stock up on some finger food before hand, something I know children love to munch on.

And that is how these Vietnamese Prawn Spring Rolls came to be.

Vietnamese Prawns Spring Rolls - The ultimate party snack for kids and adults alike - thespiceadventuress.com

We are all familiar with spring rolls especially the deep fried ones. Perhaps, one of our all time favourite ones in the snack list. There are so many fillings that can be used, both vegetarian and non vegetarian. But I must admit that I am partial to pork and prawn spring rolls.

One of the best spring rolls that I have eaten is at a small Vietnamese restaurant near home. They serve thin, crispy spring rolls to be dunked in a delicious dipping sauce. And traditionally, these spring rolls are eaten wrapped inside lettuce leaves and a couple of mint leaves. Though generally iceberg lettuce is used, I enjoyed this with cos lettuce this time. Let me tell you, once you have it this way, you will not want to eat spring rolls any other way.

The cool crispiness of the lettuce followed by the crunchy deliciousness of the spring roll finishing off with minty freshness and all of it tied together by the sweet and spicy dipping sauce.

Vietnamese Prawns Spring Rolls - The ultimate party snack for kids and adults alike - thespiceadventuress.com

So you get the point…it is delicious!

Now Adi is not too fond of the lettuce/mint leaves/dipping sauce combo; he just prefers dunking it in store brought sweet chilli sauce. And I am sure his buddies are gonna think the same. But all of us do agree on one thing that these Vietnamese prawn spring rolls are the best.

Psst…..I also managed to sneak in some extra amount of carrots. I am sure the mummies are gonna love the idea.

If you are making spring rolls for the first time, then you might take a bit of practice to get it right but hey, it’s no rocket science. I hope the images are helpful or you can just watch any ‘how to make spring roll’ video on YouTube.

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Apart from these spring rolls, I am also planning to make these Chilli Chicken Bites and Upma Cutlets. Do you have any easy suggestions that I could try out? Would love to hear all of it….

Without wasting any more time, let’s get frying these delicious Vietnamese prawn spring rolls!

Ingredients:

(Makes around 26 rolls)

For the spring rolls:

  1. 1 packet spring roll pastry (small )
  2. 300 gms prawns; deshelled and deveined
  3. 1 large carrot; grated
  4. 1 medium onion; finely chopped
  5. 1 tbsp garlic powder
  6. 1 tsp sugar
  7. 1 tsp black pepper
  8. Salt, to season
  9. Paste mixture for sealing the pastry:
  • 1 tsp all purpose flour
  • 1 tsp water
  1. Vegetable oil; for deep frying

For the dipping sauce:

  1. 2 tbsp vinegar
  2. 3 tbsp fish sauce
  3. 2 tbsp sugar
  4. 1 cup water
  5. ½ tsp chilli paste (optional)

To serve:

  1. 2 heads of Cos lettuce; leaves separated
  2. A bunch of mint leaves

Method:

  1. Mince or finely chop the prawns. Remember it should have a bite so do not overmince to a paste like texture.
  2. Add the carrots and onions along with the garlic, sugar, pepper and salt. Mix well to combine till you get a uniform consistency.
  3. Mix the flour and water to get a paste like consistency which is to be used for sealing the ends of the pastry.
  4. It is faster if you separate your pastry sheets in advance and store in an air tight container or zip lock bag to prevent drying out. Alternately, you can separate the sheets that you want and then wrap in a damp cloth, removing one at a time.
  5. Place the sheet in a diamond shape (i.e. one pointed end of the sheet towards you as depicted in the picture).
  6. Place a small amount of the filling at the end towards you (do not overload with filling as this tends the roll to break open while frying). Hold the edge and fold over the filling towards the other end and then pull it tightly towards you so that the filling is nestled tightly inside. The tighter the roll, the better will be the shape of your spring roll and also helps it from breaking in the oil.
  7. Fold the other two ends towards each other and roll the whole thing into a cylinder. Seal the end with the flour paste to secure it tightly. Place in an airtight container and cover with lid immediately to prevent drying out.
  8. Repeat the same for all the rolls.
  9. Heat enough oil in a deep pan to deep fry the rolls. To check if the oil is hot enough, insert a chopstick or wooden spoon; if you can notice bubbling around the wooden part, then the temperature is right. Do not over heat the oil as this will burn the rolls outside without cooking the inside prawn meat.
  10. Also, fry only 4-5 rolls at a time in a medium sized pan. Overcrowding leads to a temperature drop which results in soggy rolls.
  11. Fry the rolls in batches and place in a strainer. Remove after a few minutes to a kitchen paper. Avoid stacking up to ensure that the crispness stays longer.
  12. To prepare the dipping sauce, mix together all the ingredients; taste and adjust seasoning accordingly.
  13. Serve on a large platter with the spring rolls, lettuce, mint leaves and dipping sauce so that each person can customize to individual taste preferences.

Note:

  • Spring roll pastry sheets come in both small and large sizes. I have used small ones in this recipe but if you are using large, then adjust the recipe accordingly.
  • Prawn meat can be substituted with any meat of choice. You can also make a vegetarian version with mashed veggies of choice.

Vietnamese Prawns Spring Rolls - The ultimate party snack for kids and adults alike - thespiceadventuress.com

Vietnamese Prawns Spring Rolls - The ultimate party snack for kids and adults alike - thespiceadventuress.com

Prawns with Tomatoes (Burmese Style)

I have absolutely no idea about Burmese cuisine or Myanmar cuisine, as it is known today. So this recipe is a borrowed one from Chef Luke Nguyen, a celebrity chef I admire a lot, both for his recipes and his travel cooking shows.

Prawns with Tomatoes - a Burmese style prawn curry with chillies, aromatics and tomatoes - thespiceadventuress.com

I watch a lot of travelogues especially if it revolves around food. A couple of my top favourites are Anthony Bourdain’s No Reservations, Chef Luke Nguyen and Chef Peter Kuruvita, Food Safari, Spice Route etc….For me, a good cooking show is one where the presenter has a real respect and fascination for the culture, lifestyle and food of the region.

I hate shows where the presenter or host walks around eating anything and everything going ‘mmmmmm delicious’. I mean, seriously….

So while watching one of Chef Nguyen’s shows, I came across this recipe for Burmese style Prawns with Tomatoes. Now I have no idea if this dish is traditional or has he put his own twist on it (he says it’s a traditional one). But what I know for sure is that it is damn delicious!

Prawns with Tomatoes - a Burmese style prawn curry with chillies, aromatics and tomatoes - thespiceadventuress.com

It’s a basic one, a handful of everyday ingredients that works magic in a wok. The cuisine of Myanmar is slightly on the fiery side with big and bold flavours. So if you are not a fan of chilli, just reduce it a bit. Make sure you get shallots; it would taste way better than with regular onions. And also pound the aromatics in a mortar and pestle if you have one; little things that make a lot of difference to the overall taste.

Though Chef Nguyen used king prawns for his version, I used the regular prawns; much more affordable. But if you are in the mood to splurge or want a bit of drama, get the king prawns and cook with the head and tail bit intact.

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Prawns with Tomatoes - a Burmese style prawn curry with chillies, aromatics and tomatoes - thespiceadventuress.com

This recipe is also a part of my seafood project with Supreme Seafood; so you will need to hop over to their Facebook page for the complete recipe. And as always, do remember to tag me #thespiceadventuress so that I can see if you have cooked this recipe or any other from the blog.

Cheers!

Ingredients:

  1. 600gms prawns; deshelled and deveined
  2. 6 large shallots (if small, use 8-10)
  3. 3 garlic cloves
  4. 3/4th inch ginger

Read the full recipe here.

Prawns with Tomatoes - a Burmese style prawn curry with chillies, aromatics and tomatoes - thespiceadventuress.com

Crumbed Prawns with Desiccated Coconut and Spices

Why not one last recipe before 2016 arrives, especially when we love seafood so much!

Prawns are indispensable for our summer parties, and one of our most favourite foods to throw on the barbie. But today we are having crunchy, crumbed prawns with a difference. Bye to breadcrumbs and welcome to desiccated coconut to crumb these beauties.

Crumbed Prawns with Desiccated Coconut and Spices - a simple, easy to make crunchy prawn starter for your next party - thespiceadventuress.com

I made a batch of these crumbed prawns for a small get-together at home and everyone loved it, especially the kids. And ofcourse spices are integral to any recipe of mine, so I used a basic marinade for the prawns which boosts the flavour quotient. Not much of heat, but definitely more flavour.

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This is an extremely simple recipe, very few ingredients. The prawns can be pre-prepared and kept in the refrigerator till your guests arrive. I oven baked these with absolutely no oil as the coconut releases a bit of oil which is enough to get a crunchy exterior. But if you wish to shallow fry, you may do so but again, very less oil.

Served with sweet chilli sauce, these crumbed prawns with desiccated coconut and spices make an absolutely delicious starter.

Crumbed Prawns with Desiccated Coconut and Spices - a simple, easy to make crunchy prawn starter for your next party - thespiceadventuress.com

Wishing all of you a fantabulous 2016 and a year ahead of joy, happiness and abundant blessings.

Ingredients:

  1. 500gm prawns; shelled and deveined (retain a bit of the shell at the tail end)
  2. 1 ½ cups desiccated coconut
  3. Salt, to season

View the full recipe here.

Crumbed Prawns with Desiccated Coconut and Spices - a simple, easy to make crunchy prawn starter for your next party - thespiceadventuress.com

Crumbed Prawns with Desiccated Coconut and Spices - a simple, easy to make crunchy prawn starter for your next party - thespiceadventuress.com

Recipe developed, styled and shot for Supreme Seafood. 

Prawn Pickle

An Indian meal, no matter how elaborate it is, stays incomplete without a pickle by the side. It is perhaps only in Indian cuisine that pickles are so diverse in preparation and flavours. And over years, we have learnt to pickle just about any ingredient!

Seafood pickles are extremely common in South India, especially in Kerala owing to the state’s enviable coastline. Today’s prawn pickle is inspired by the flavours of Kerala; it is spicy but sour and tangy too. A complex myriad of flavours in every spoonful.

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Small prawns or shrimps are used to make this pickle generally. The prawns are marinated first, deep fried and then tossed through the pickling mixture which is a fiery concoction of red chilli, aromatics, curry leaves and spices like fenugreek, mustard and asafoetida.

Pickles always develop flavour over days and it is best to store this one too for a few days in your refrigerator before enjoying it.

Pickles are more of a condiment, and supposedly to be enjoyed in small quantities along with the main meal. I tried so hard but failed miserably in this regard as this prawn pickle was so delicious that it became more of a main dish than the condiment. All I needed was a bowl of rice and some thick yoghurt!

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I am sure you will agree on this too, so let’s not waste anymore time talking and get straight on to the recipe.

Ingredients:

1. 1 kg small prawns/shrimps; deshelled and deveined
2. Vegetable oil; to deep fry the prawns

For full recipe, click here.

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Recipe developed, styled and shot for Supreme Seafood.

‘GunPowder’ Prawns

Only for a South Indian can ‘gunpowder’ mean something delicious!

Gunpowder is a fiery spice blend that often graces the breakfast tables of many South Indian regions. It is usually mixed with ghee/clarified butter or sometimes just vegetable oil and used as a condiment to dosas and idlis (both breakfast staples of the region).

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Now with a name like gunpowder, it’s rather obvious that this blend is indeed a spicy and fiery one. The ghee is usually added to tone down the heat but let’s not kid ourselves; this one is still hot and for those with stronger palates.

But today, we are shaking things up a bit. Since I am clearly not a morning person (as most of you know), I am taking this breakfast favourite to spice up my favourite ingredient – seafood!

Gunpowder prawns. Yes, that’s what I am calling today’s dish.

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Get your hands on the juiciest tiger prawns you can, nothing less would do to make this lip smacking delicacy that is definitely a conversation starter.

It’s a pretty simple and straightforward recipe; even making gunpowder is no rocket science. The ingredients are few and the process simple. I have incorporated familiar South Indian flavours which are all present to complement the heat of the gunpowder. And you will see that the prawns can absorb a lot of the heat so that the final dish is actually not very spicy unless you add loads of the spice blend which I do not recommend anyway.

Since I wanted more prawny flavours (for lack of a better word!), I sautéed the shells first with butter and shallots and then added the prawns. But if you cannot stand the smell or if you are not comfortable with the step, just sauté the onions without the shells and toss in the prawns.

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Ingredients:

1. 600 gms tiger prawns (with shells)
2. 3-4 tsp gunpowder
3. Salt, to season
4. 2 tbsp butter
5. 1 sprig curry leaves; finely sliced

For full recipe, click here….

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Recipe developed, styled and photographed for Supreme Seafood. 

Pan Fried Prawns with Curry Leaf Spice Blend

School holidays are over and that means it’s time to get back to the daily grind!

Though this was a small two week break, it was a whirlwind one packed with activities, short trips, church, Easter egg hunts, loads of chocolate (and there’s plenty left) and food.

Work has been lax over these two weeks and its time I honoured my commitments and finish off the pending projects; starting with this recipe developed for Supreme Seafood Company.

I have an on-going love affair with curry leaves. Blame it on my Indian roots, especially my South Indian roots, I absolutely love the flavour, aroma and pungency of curry leaves. I have always felt it is such an underestimated herb, often relegated to just the tempering stage when it can be used in so many different ways.

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Use of curry leaves is practically unheard of in other cuisines. Given its native nature, it can be difficult to grow in most other countries. My Western world friends are quite jealous seeing the ease with which we can buy curry leaves in Australia and even grow it. I bought my first plant last week!

Today’s dish is a South Indian style prawn fry which showcases the flavour of curry leaves to its utmost. Experimented a bit to get the balance of flavours right, but finally nailed it.

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An extremely simple one to prepare, the star ingredient here is of course the gorgeous curry leaves which are pounded along with spices and aromatics to create a strong yet flavourful marinade (a little of this goes a long way). Allow the prawns to absorb these flavours and then finish off by frying in a splash of coconut oil. Delicious!

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This marinade/spice blend can be prepared in bulk and refrigerated or frozen for later use. Use it to stir fry chicken and serve with rice and dal or use it as a sandwich filling or in tacos. For a vegetarian option, I am thinking of potatoes, mushrooms, cottage cheese……

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Ingredients:

1. 300 gms medium-sized prawns; cleaned and deveined
2. ½ cup fresh curry leaves + 2 sprigs for garnish
3. 4 garlic cloves

Click here for full recipe…..

Recipe developed, styled and shot for Supreme Seafood

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