Sunday, December 05, 2010

Kerala Prawn Curry

Since one week, it is heavily snowing here. Though I've spent about 3 Winters in Germany, still I cannot stop admiring the beauty of snowfall. Those little soft white flakes, falling gently from above and covering everything in a powdery white... woww... it is so wonderful !!

Though I have an urge to hold them in my hands and feel them, it is quite difficult. The moment, I touch them, my hands go numb of coldness and I'm not able to actually 'feel' the texture of snow.

Anyways, it is awfully cold here and we wanted to eat something a little hot and something Indian. So, we gave a try to the Prawns curry and here is how we prepared it.

Prawn Curry is famous in Kerala, Traditionally, it is made with coconut, ground to a smooth paste and the curry is very rich. But, we made a non-traditional lighter version of it.

Preparation Time: 30 Min
Serves: 3-4

Things you would need:

Prawns - 500g
Onions – 2 big onions, chopped
Coconut milk - 200 ml
Ginger – 1 inch piece
Garlic – 4-6 cloves
Turmeric powder – ½ tsp
Coriander powder – 1 ½ tsp
Green chillies – 2
Mustard seeds – 1 tsp
Fenugreek seeds – 1 tsp
Curry leaves – a few
Canola oil – 2 Tbs
Lemon juice – 1 (or ½ if too sour)
Salt – to taste
Coriander leaves – to garnish


Add the onions, green chillies, ginger and garlic to a mixer and grind to a smooth paste.

In a wide heavy bottom pan, add oil and when hot, add the mustard seeds. When the mustard splutters, add fenugreek seeds, curry leaves and the ground mixture and sauté for a few minutes, till the onion mixture is well cooked.

Now add turmeric, coriander powder and crushed pepper and stir the masaala for a few mins without getting burned. After the raw smell goes away, add the prawns along with coconut milk and salt. Cover the pan and cook in medium heat. Since I used frozen prawns, it took about 10 mins to get cooked. Cooking time may also vary if you use fresh prawns. But, make sure they are not overcooked; otherwise it gets rubbery.

After prawns are done, stir in the lemon juice, sprinkle a pinch of sugar and toss with the coriander leaves.

Serve with freshly prepared rice.

  • Instead of coconut milk, one could also use 1 cup grated coconut, ground to a smooth paste.
  • In the authentic recipe, tamarind juice is used in place of lemon juice.
  • Green chillies could also be replaced by dried red chillies or ½ tsp chili powder, which would naturally give a slightly different taste.

Thursday, December 02, 2010


It's quite some time since my last post. I've been a little tied up with my job. A few weeks back, we bought some things in a Bio (Organic Food) Shop and while shopping I found a tiny booklet with a few Christmas recipes and was excited. I have gained confidence with baking, ever since I tried my hands on it and almost 80% of my baking experiences were a success. With that confidence, this time I wanted to try a cookies recipe.

Printen - They are a kind of cookies, famously called the Aachener Printen. Those authentic ones hail from a place called Aachen. I've never tasted them and neither do I know how those are prepared. I just followed the recipe given in that booklet. It was very easy to make and tasted absolutely wonderful. Here, you go...

Preparation Time: 15 Min
Baking Time: 12 Min

You need:

Plain flour – 250g
Soft Butter – 100g
Sugar – 50g
Honey – 150g
Zest of orange – 1 tsp
Baking powder – 2 tsp
Salt – a pinch
Cardamom – ½ tsp
Almonds – 100g
Fruit spread from Apricot


Blend sugar, butter and honey well to a fluffy mixture. To this, add the flour, orange zest, cardamom and salt and knead to dough. Cover this dough with a thin fresh foil and refrigerate for about half an hour.

Take the dough out and roll to about 5mm thickness. Now, cut into rectangular pieces. Place a baking sheet on a slightly buttered baking tray. Arrange the pieces on the baking sheet, with some distance between each other.

Now, slightly paint the pieces with the fruit spread on the top, using a baking brush. Press an almond into the centre of each piece.

Preheat the oven to 175C and bake the pieces for about 12 mins.

  • The actual recipe called for 75g sugar. We found it a bit too sweet for cookies. So, I have reduced the amount of sugar to 50g in the recipe above.
  • The actual recipe called for gingerbread spice. I have replaced it with cardamom.
My Printen were done exactly on the 12th minute, when they were beautifully brown gold in colour. The fruit spread coating and the orange zest gave a fabulous taste to the cookies. I was overwhelmed with the success.

I stored them in an air-tight container and for the next few days, after coming home from office and before cooking, they helped me keep my hunger away for sometime :-)