I have a serious weakness for foodie mags, a serious weakness. I’ll read them first, usually curled up on the sofa with a nice cup of tea, and hold up every other page to Hubby making “oooh!” noises (bless him for humouring me every time!). If there’s anything that grabs my attention right away I’ll tear it straight out and try it sooner rather than later. Then I’ll leave the magazine lying around for a couple of months before going through it again and tearing out every recipe I like. It’s one of the reasons Hubby actually got me to start this blog, to do something with all those torn out recipes that were piling up around us. 🙂
This recipe is adapted from one of those ones that I tore out straight away, from a recent-ish issue of Waitrose’s magazine. It was the picture that grabbed my attention first, all those plump pink prawns, and then the fact that it was a curry to boot. I’ve only ever really cooked prawns a few times, for spaghetti dishes, which always felt quite a summery supper to have. That and Hubby is originally from a landlocked state so was a wee bit wary of seafood, but he seems to have finally come around to it (and how!) so didn’t take much persuading to be fed this, especially when there was curry involved…
The original recipe uses canned tomatoes but we found that substituting V8 juice instead added a whole other layer of spice and flavour, which is then tempered beautifully by the coconut milk. The curry’s heat is down to how strong your red chilli is so if you want to err on the side of caution then de-seed it before chopping and you can always add a wee bit of chilli powder while the tomato juice is simmering if you think it needs it – I’ve read that you can cut the tip off a red chilli and place it against your tongue to check its heat but I’ve never been brave enough!
This is a deliciously light and fresh curry which feels perfect for early Spring, comfort food without being heavy. The mustard and cumin seeds add a lovely fragrant note that is a perfect compliment to the fresh coriander. Don’t skimp on the seeds, they really do make that much of a difference. And if this becomes a bit of a regular dish on your dinner roster (like it has on ours already) then you’ll be getting through those wee bottles in next to no time. 🙂
- Stuff you'll need...!
- 2 tbsp vegetable oil
- 1 tbsp black mustard seeds
- 1 tbsp cumin seeds
- 1 white onion, diced
- small bunch of coriander (28g bag), stalks and leaves separated
- 1/2 red chilli, finely chopped
- 2 garlic cloves, crushed
- 15g fresh ginger, grated
- 300ml V8 juice (or canned chopped tomatoes)
- 1/2 tbsp garam masala
- 300ml coconut milk
- 235g raw king prawns, deveined
- The trick to this dish for me is doing all the chopping/crushing/grating/de-veining work before you start cooking. Sorting the prawns takes a bit of time but nobody wants to eat the ‘poop chute’ (sorry!).
- The tip of a paring knife works a charm, but I find that a toothpick is even easier to tease out that nasty dark thread. Pop the de-veined prawns into a bowl of ice cold water and then into the fridge until you’re ready to use them.
- Then finely chop the coriander stalks, dice the onion, mince the garlic, finely chop the red chilli and grate the ginger (if you freeze your ginger beforehand it makes grating it much easier).
- Heat the oil in a large wok or saute pan over a medium-high heat before adding the mustard and cumin seeds. Cook until they start to pop.
- Add the onions to the popping seeds and turn the heat down to medium before cooking for a further 3-5 minutes, or until the onions are golden.
- Add the finely chopped coriander stalks to the pan with the chilli, garlic and ginger, and cook for another 7 minutes.
- Tip in the V8 juice (or canned tomatoes) and season before cooking for 5 minutes, by which time the sauce should have reduced and be a bit paste-like (you should start to see the oil separate). Then stir in the garam masala and the coconut milk, and taste for seasoning.
- Pat the prawns dry with kitchen paper and add them to the sauce. Cook for about 3-4 minutes, until the prawns turn pink.
- Serve on rice with a scatter of coriander leaves.