Thursday, 9 October 2008


Prawns – What can I say…..except that I love them! I can eat them any day and any way. I have never known a prawn that I never loved and I sympathise with everyone out there that are allergic to prawns. You poor things!

Anyway, yesterday I made prawn curry. There are many different ways that I make my prawn curry and this time I made it using plenty of coriander (fresh, seeds and ground) as my base. The ground ingredients will look very green but don’t worry; once you add your masala (curry powder in Hindi/Punjabi), it will be looking very much like a curry! Here’s how I made CORIANDER PRAWN CURRY WITH EGGPLANT, OKRA AND POTATOES.


1 kg green prawns – peeled but heads and tail left intact
2 large potatoes – cut into large cubes (normally I quarter the potatoes and then half each quarter)
1 large eggplant/aubergine or 2 to 3 Lebanese eggplants – cut into large cubes the same size as the potatoes.
Large handful of okra/ladies fingers – if using large okras, slice into half, cross ways
2 spring onions and 1 coriander plant – chopped for garnishing
2 to 3 tbsp veg oil
2 tsp coriander seeds
Sufficient water for cooking
3 to 4 heaped tbsp ‘seafood’ curry powder/masala – see HINT below
1 heaped tsp coriander powder
2 to 3 tamarind pieces
½ to 1 tin coconut milk – according to your taste
Salt to taste

Spice paste: Grind TOGETHER the following with one cup of water
8 to 10 shallots or 3 medium red/brown onions
½ head of garlic
Thumb size fresh ginger
3 large coriander plants
2 spring onions


In a large pot, heat oil and add in the coriander seeds. Sauté for 30 secs then add in the ground ingredients. Cook and stir continuously (you don’t want your paste to burn) until most of the water has evaporated and the paste has a slight golden tinge to it.

Add in the curry paste and coriander powder and about 1 cup of water for starters. Mix the paste well. If it is too dry, add another cup of water. Cook on medium low heat until the paste is slightly dry and you can see oil seeping through the surface.

Now add in the tamarind pieces and the potatoes and just enough water to cover the potatoes. You don’t want too much water as it will make your curry too runny. It is better to add more water if needed than to cook the curry for longer to ‘evaporate’ the water. On medium heat, cover and cook for 5 to 8 mins or until the potatoes are half cooked.

Next add in the eggplant and cook for another 3 to 5 mins. Your curry may be slightly dry at this stage but try not to add much water at this stage. Now add in the coconut milk (start with just half the tin – the prawns and vegetables are ‘sweet’ so you may not need that much coconut milk), prawns, okras, about ½ a cup of water and salt. Gently stir the curry (you don’t want your vegetables and prawn to ‘crumble’). Cook for about 4 to 5 minutes. Check the seasoning. Lift, garnish with the chopped spring onions/coriander and serve with bread or rice and a side dish of vegetables such as STIR FRIED OKRA WITH TAMARIND.

However, when you are checking the seasoning and feel that the curry is too ‘hot’, add in more coconut milk to tone it down. Don’t forget that when you eat it with rice or bread, you will lose some of the heat. Bring the curry to a boil again, lift, add garnish and serve.

HINT: If you can’t find a Malaysian brand ‘seafood’ curry powder, use normal Malaysian curry powder (such as Yeos or Ayam Brand) or any good Indian curry powder. Do not use a western style curry powder (Keen’s or Clive of India); this will totally ruin your curry!

FYI: I use either Baba or Parrot brand seafood and meat (yes there are specific curry powders for seafood and meat) curry powder. You can find these brands at most Asian grocers in Canberra.

NB: This is another one of those dishes that taste better the next day. I always make extra to have with any type of bread (yes, sliced white bread or any stick bread) or roti canai the day after.


Anonymous said...

Why do you do this to me VG? Everytime I come over, you cook my favourite food. More cooking for me to attempt. The curry looks so inviting.


Jan said...

Looks lovely VG! I have never cooked or even eaten 'Orka' before - I must try it.
PS: I will write soon (sorry) was out all day yesterday and working mon and tues.

VG said...

Sorry Grace...I can't really put unappetising food up, can I? Then you or anyone else for the matter of fact, won't visit my blog!

VG said...

Hi Jan and thanks for stopping by.

Okra is quite expensive and difficult to find at the best of times. The taste in my opinion is unique and very nice.

I actually stir fried some okra as well to go with the curry (okras go well with curries). I'll post it in the next few minutes. You must try it!


I love prawn curry or any curry for that matter (indian genes working hard!) but i get scared when i see a long list of ingredients & steps to make it! Hahahahah!

VG said...

Hi Jo

What's the saying? No pain, no gain! He! He!

There maybe a lot of ingredients but it is all easy stuff that you have around the home anyway. No don't have to put the same veg....just tokok and tambah, I say. As long as you have the ground ingredients and the curry powder, you're cooking with gas! (Aussie saying meaning you are good to go!)

Cheers my friend.

SweetBites said...

hi VG, i just disappeared fr the blogsphere for a couple of days and here i see so many wonderful dishes in yr blog. i've never cooked eggplant & okra with prawns.potatoes yes. is it an ethnic punjabi cuisine coz my north indian friends hve never mentioned this dish before? btw. do u celebrate diwali?

VG said...


Thanks for stopping by...I was wondering where you were.

I don't think the curry is Punjabi; there's dried tamarind pieces in it. Do they use tamarind pieces there? I know they use imbli. I would reckon it is more malay influenced...I grew up in army camps until my uni days.

FYI when I make a curry, I just add what's around in the fridge!

Yes I celebrate Diwali but it is not a holiday here so I don't do much cooking :(

charming said...

Hi VG, I came across your site from Family First. Glad to see another Aussie blog. Love the okra recipes.

VG said...

Hi Charming

Yay, another fellow Malaysian Aussie blogger. Good to make your acquaintance. Glad you like the okra recipes.

Just saw on your blog that you have been to Surfers. We are due there next month for our holidays too!

Do drop in again. I will call in your 'place' shortly

SweetBites said...

hi VG, nice to knw its a Malay dish. sorry i've never used dried tamarind.can i use it the same way as imli? wow! u r in Australia & knw more about malay cuisine than poor old me. i guess it all boils down to the environment u grew up with. i was more famililiar with indian cuisine as my parents were immigrants fr India. never mind, i'll learn more malay dishes fr u.

VG said...

Hi again Zarina

You know more about Indian food than I ever would so we can teach each other things, ya.

You could use imbli instead of the assam keping/gelugur. There will be a slight change in taste. Not bad change; just different. I tend to only use assam keping in prawn curries but when I make fish curries, I use both assam keping and assam jawa. Let me know how you go.

Shafidah Shamen said...

vin..i had tried this..awesome! i'll put up the pic in my blog soon.

Shafidah Shamen said...

Vin, i had tried this recipe, its awesome! will put up the pic in my blog soon :D

VG said...

Hi Shafidah

Glad you like the is sedap isn't it? I love it too.

Anonymous said...

Hi VG,
Thks for sharing this delicious prawn curry -

I made it for dinner yesteday with ur cumin puri recipe. So yummy!


VG said...

Hi aquariusgal

Excellent! So glad you liked it. I tried the link you provided but unfortunately I needed a password. Could you send me a pic via my e-mail?

Thank you. VG

VG said...


When I checked my e-mail, I could access the full link and was able to view the photos. Well looks good. Glad you liked it! Do try out my other recipes especially Ayam Pati Ski. You will love that, trust me!

Anonymous said...

Hi VG,
Happy Deepavali!!
Thks for viewing my pics! Again thks for sharing so many wonderful recipes.I will try out ur Ayam Pati Ski recipe soon - hopefully its not too hot for my kids. I love hot spicy curries but unfortunately have to tone them down to very mild to suit my children's taste.


VG said...

Hi Aquariusgal

Thank you for your Deepavali greetings.

As long as you use large red chillies and take all the seeds out, your kids will enjoy them. My kids ate this dish as young as I can remember and they still ask us to make this every other week. Good luck in trying this and I would love to see your pics again. It's a good feeling when someone actually tries your food!