Nothing beats a spicy prawn curry especially with Fiji prawns because they are sourced fresh from the mountains of the Fijian Highlands. Sea-sourced prawns are great, but not as amazing as the black, fresh-water prawns of Fiji. Just ask any Fijian, the answer will be the same: “Fiji’s prawns are the best!”
In Fiji-Indian homes if you make anything but curry with these prawns, it is considered a waste – and rightly so. Variations of this dish are vast. Some make heavy gravy with potatoes in the curry and others make them with tomatoes. Some make them soupy and others do a ‘dry fry’ (minimal liquid). This is a sort of in-between recipe, and has more of a South-Indian or Madrasi flavour. I would recommend you have this with some roti or any kind of bread.
A quick demo can be found in the video below.
- 1 kg Fresh Prawns (heads removed, de-veined)
- 1/4 Cup Oil (vegetable/olive/bran)
- 4–5 Curry Leaves
- Chillies to taste
- 2 Onions (for thick gravy)
- 1 Bulb Garlic and 1/2 inch Ginger (crushed into paste)
- 2 Large Tomatoes (chopped)
- 1/2 Lemon
- 2 Star Anise
- 2 Cinnamon Sticks
- 1 bunch Coriander
- 1/4 tsp Cumin Seeds (Jeera)
- 3 Dried Chillies
- 1/2 tsp Turmeric
- 1/4 tsp Fenugreek Seeds (Methi)
- 2 tbsp Masala
- 1/4 tsp Mustard Seeds (Sarso)
- Dry fry star anise and cinnamon for a few minutes on high heat. Then add oil and allow it to heat up till smoke begins to form
- Add in dried chillies, cumin seeds, fenugreek seeds and mustard seeds (jeera, methi, sarso)
- Throw in curry leaves and let it crackle and release its aroma
- Add in onions and saute till soft and half its original size (be sure to add a pinch of salt to quicken the process)
- Then add the turmeric and allow it to fry for a few seconds and to mix with the other ingredients
- Put in the garlic and fry till thoroughly cooked and golden brown
- Mix in the masala and fry for a few minutes or till the oil separates from the mixture
- Then add the tomatoes and cook till soft and forms a gravy with the all the ingredients
- Slide in the fresh prawns and stir well. Cook for a few minutes (do not over cook the prawns or they will have a rubbery texture)
- Squeeze in the juice of half a lemon and add salt to taste
- Garnish with coriander (or not) and serve hot.
[box type=”tick” style=”rounded” border=”full”]Cook Time: 1 Hour[/box]
hello, looking forward to making this. what is the masala?
Hi Jane, any Fiji masala will do, your normal meat masala if you have it will work just fine
Do you mean a clove of garlic or do you really mean a bulb? A bulb is the whole thing with all the cloves attached together?
Hi, yes as per the recipe, it is one bulb, i.e. many cloves attached together! One clove will not be enough for a South Indian style curry for that amount of prawns. Happy cooking!