Goan Prawn Curry

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Credit: Carolyn Fortes, assistant purveyor/food preparation specialist, The Supreme Court of the United States; and baking/pastry instructor, The Art Institute of Washington, Arlington, Virginia
Sizzle, Fall 2014

From the Chef

“Prawn curry tastes best when served with steamed white rice. I usually add one vegetable to it as well. Cauliflower florets, okra and moringa lend themselves well to these spices and the shrimp. Prawn curry makes a great leftover dish. The blend of spices and seafood in thick coconut milk matures with time. You can eat it with some fresh pao or crusty baguette for breakfast, lunch or dinner the next day.”


1 lb. prawns
Salt to taste
¼ t. turmeric powder
1 coconut, scraped (or 1 can unsweetened coconut milk)
8 kashmiri chilies (or 8 New Mexico or 6 guajillo chilies)
2-3 bedki chilies (arbol)
2 T. coriander seeds
¼ t. cumin seeds
6 medium garlic cloves
3-4 peppercorns
1-inch ginger
1 small (lime size ball) tamarind
2 T. cooking oil
1 medium onion, diced small
3-4 Thai peppers, slit
Tomatoes for garnish, julienned


1. Wash, clean and pat dry prawns. Apply salt to taste and turmeric to disinfect.
2. In food processor, grind together coconut, kashmiri chilies, bedki chilies, coriander seeds, cumin seeds, 4 garlic cloves, peppercorns and ginger until smooth. (You may need to add at least 1 cup of water to initiate grinding if using fresh or frozen coconut.)
3. Soak tamarind in warm water. Add only the softened pulp to above mix, completing masala curry base.
4. Heat cooking oil in pot on medium heat. Add onions; saute until translucent.
5. Thinly slice remaining 2 garlic cloves; add to onions.
6. Once cooked, add masala. Saute 1-2 minutes until begins to bubble.
7. Add water to a consistency of your liking. Taste; season with salt as needed.
8. When curry comes to a boil, add shrimp and slit Thai chilies. (Seed chilies for milder flavor.)
9. Add julienned tomatoes if desired for additional tartness and garnish.
10. Poach and simmer gently for 1-2 minutes. Do not overcook shrimp.
11. Taste; adjust seasonings for balance of sweet, sour and salty.


8 servings


Main Dish, Seafood, Sizzle

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