Kerala prawn curry

Kerala prawn curry

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(58 ratings)


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Cooking time

Prep: 15 mins - 20 mins Cook: 15 mins

Skill level



Serves 2

Warm up the coldest day with a creamy coconut milk curry - it's got quite a kick!

Nutrition and extra info

Nutrition info

Nutrition per serving

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  • 2 red chillies split, cut into quarters lengthways and seeded
  • 1 small red onion, chopped
  • 2½ cm piece of fresh root ginger, peeled and chopped
  • 1 tbsp vegetable or sunflower oil
  • 1 tsp black mustard seed
  • ½ tsp fenugreek seeds
  • 14 curry leaves, fresh or dried
  • ½ tsp turmeric
  • ½ tsp cracked black peppercorns
  • 250g jumbo prawns, leave some with their tails on if you like
  • 150ml reduced-fat coconut milk

To serve

  • a squeeze of lime
  • chopped fresh coriander, plus a sprig or two
  • freshly boiled basmati rice

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  1. In a food processor, blitz the chillies, onion and ginger with 3 tbsp water into a smoothish paste – you may need to scrape it down the sides.
  2. Heat the oil in a heavy pan or wok. When hot, toss in the mustard and fenugreek seeds, and curry leaves – they’ll crackle and pop – and fry for 10 seconds. Add the onion paste, turn the heat down a tad and cook without colouring for about 5 minutes. Splash in some water if it starts to catch.
  3. Add the turmeric and cracked peppercorns and stir the spices around for a few seconds before tipping in the prawns. Pour in the coconut milk and bring to a simmer, stirring all the time. The milk will take on a yellow colour from the turmeric. Cook for 1 minute until everything’s heated through. Squeeze over some lime, sprinkle with fresh coriander and serve with rice.

Recipe from Good Food magazine, February 2003

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Show comments
helloyouitsme's picture
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Personally I found this dish spicy but lacking flavour, so I added a lot more Indian Spices and salt to lift the taste.

clovelly1's picture

So fast, easy and delicious loved it!

fluffyblueberry's picture
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This was so easy and absolutely delicious. I couldn't find black mustard seeds either - but no matter! It still tasted great.

clovelly1's picture

Quick & easy, looks glorious and tastes divine!

I could have eaten more though...

blazer-glory's picture

Couldn't find black mustard seeds anywhere, eventually got them, amazingly, from Ebay! :)

rlkhadse's picture

I tried it, it's quick to cook and is very tasty. One serving tip: Rice should not be sticky.

janemathieson001's picture

This was delicious and 1 recipe that didn't need any tweaking, the spices balanced perfectly to give a hot but not overpowering flavour and the colour made it a feast for the eyes as well as the tastebuds... so easy that it would be one to do for friends too :)
For anyone who does find it a little hot I would recommend a little yogurt on the side instead of messing about with the recipe.

everyreasonto's picture
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Very nice, think ill put a bit less chilli in next time, even though i do like spicy food.

jaime_mortimer's picture

Tried this over the weekend, it was really fresh and tasty. Will definitely be making this again. Was not as spicy as i was hoping.

coco11's picture

Any good Veggie curries ?

this one looks so tasty

lynnfirth's picture

Superb! My husband cooked it and he thought it was great as it was quick to do and one of the best curries he has had for a long time (he always says that about his own cooking)!

Will certainly do it again and maybe try with chicken next time.

sprocket's picture

Authentic, full of taste and a real family favourite!

buttonz80's picture

I managed to find black mustard seeds at my local pakistani supermarket

avanti's picture
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Spicy - but fantastic!

bexhep's picture

Barts do black mustard seeds, they can be found in the herbs and spices section in larger supermarkets.

blazer-glory's picture

I can't find black mustard seeds any where. The only ones I can get are white. Does it matter?

sharoni's picture

The heat in this dish comes from the cracked black pepper, many people view pepper as a seasoning forgetting that it is in fact a very fiery spice, it is the main spice ingredient in Sri Lankan dishes, if you would like it milder just reduce the amount of cracked pepper.

katiebutler's picture
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This was hot. I left out the curry leaves it was still fantastic will be cooking this to death.

mrjamesedwardsmith's picture

Sorry Angela, I'm a bit late. How did the curry go?:

angelahorner's picture

This is really nice. We were worried it wouldnt be hot enough, but its lovely and tasty.

Bit of advice though. If I am cooking it for 6 do I do 3x all the ingredients and as I have ground Fennugreek not seeds, how much should I use? Anyone???