Snacking Prawns with Tamarind Glaze

November 20, 2007

All this last minute party planning is so exhausting. I survived Diwali. I’m not taking any chances with Christmas.

Along with sorting my festive glam outfit (red tights are so in) I’ve been in deep thought about Christmas nibbles.

Festive snacks, it seems, are the mainstay of keen chefs and gluttons for punishment only. I am neither. You so won’t catch me wrapping 50 tiger prawns with 50 slices of prosciutto or fashioning 50 little kebabs to shallow fry in batches.

Just thinking about it is exhausting…

I will be sitting in front of the roaring fire instead. Hurling abuse at my siblings. Glass of winter Pimms in one hand. Whopping everyone at Pictionary with the other.

As if by luck, Santa came early this year. And he brought just the thing I needed for inspiration, a wonderful cookbook titled Modern Indian Cooking.

Written by Vikas Khanna and Hari Nayak, two US-based Indian chefs, this cookbook does exactly what it says on the tin. There’s no “let’s put Indian ingredients together and pretend it’s what we grew up on” malarky. This is an unashamed tribute to the recipes your mother didn’t cook at home. Like almond crusted roast leg of lamb and peppers stuffed with coriander coconut cream.

I made the superb prawns with tamarind glaze, which will definitely feature at Christmas. Two hours of marinating, three minutes of shallow frying give you one large plateful of lick-your-plate-clean prawns.

My kind of Christmas snacking. Ho Ho Ho…



This recipe feeds 6:

  • 500 gm large prawns, shelled and cleaned (I defrosted a bag of frozen ones)
  • 1 tsp ginger, minced
  • 4 tsp garlic, minced
  • 1 tsp ground cumin
  • 1 tbsp tamarind paste
  • 1 tsp chilli powder
  • Half tsp turmeric powder
  • 1 tbsp plain white flour
  • Salt to taste
  • 4 tbsp vegetable oil
  • One lemon



Wash and dry the prawns. Mix with all the ingredients (bar the lemon juice) and two tablespoons of oil. Leave to marinate for about two hours.

When ready to eat, shallow fry the prawns in the remaining oil on ether side for two to three minutes turning once during cooking. Pile up high on a large white platter and squeeze the lemon juice all over.

PS = This is my entry for Zlamushka’s Spoonful of Christmas event on the grounds that the marinade (and cookbook) will make an excellent present.

PPS = Does this mean I have made it to my first blog event this year? Does it? Better late than never…



15 Responses to “Snacking Prawns with Tamarind Glaze”

  1. Hand Blender Webmaster Says:

    November 2nd, 2010 at 11:24 pm

    This looks great. Hmmm… I think I’ll be using this little recipe for my new year party

    Thanks for sharing

  2. Pallavi Says:

    May 8th, 2010 at 4:50 am

    This recipe is fantastic tried it many times and walla every time it turns out to be just perrrfect…thank you.

  3. Elaine From Cookware Help Says:

    April 2nd, 2010 at 6:58 am


    I love prawns and these looks absolutely delicous. I must have a look at the “Modern Indian Cooking” book you suggest.

  4. chabrenas Says:

    December 12th, 2007 at 3:44 am

    Superb. It’s difficult enough to find savoury rather than sweet recipes for the festive season, and this is an all-year-round one.

    Until now I’ve just slit them down the back and fried them whole (heads and all) in garlic butter. Get them crisp, and the only thing you leave is a nearly-empty head for the cat and/or dog.

  5. Zlamushka Says:

    November 25th, 2007 at 1:15 am

    Oh lovely! Thanx so much, i ve been desperately looking for some glaze recipes. Now I have one, plus an entry to my event! Great combo. See you at the round-up :-)

  6. Paula from Only Cookware Says:

    November 23rd, 2007 at 1:55 am

    That looks absolutely delicous. I love anything with prawns in it. I will keep this recipe for when I am cooking prawns on the bbq. I usually just marinade them in honey, ginger, garlic and white wine but this recipe will make a nice change.

  7. sandeepa Says:

    November 21st, 2007 at 10:07 am

    That is indeed agreat recipe. never added tamarind to prawns…maybe the time is right

  8. Happy cook Says:

    November 21st, 2007 at 5:36 am

    That sounds really a wonderful idea to chillout for christmas.
    I for sure know will be slaving in the kitchen as we will have most of the family comming to our place and i do the whole dinner.
    But i am getting clever i am trying to prepare dishes which i can prepare a day ot two early

  9. Krista Says:

    November 20th, 2007 at 6:13 pm

    Oh. My. God.

    Those look/sound amazing. Now to pick up some lovely, luscious shrimp and whip up a batch, be inspired to write a blog post and link to your page so that my friends can look at your photo and not mine.

  10. Wendy Says:

    November 20th, 2007 at 1:17 pm

    You’re my kind of woman, Mallika. Were I actually in the country for xmas this year I’d be at the other end of the country drinking Baileys and also screaming at my siblings (and anyone else within earshot) over Pictionary. :)

  11. Rina Says:

    November 20th, 2007 at 12:40 pm

    Ho! I think it is shrimposhere in all NV blogs. Lovely pic and unique recipe. I have one mine too.

  12. Padmaja Says:

    November 20th, 2007 at 12:11 pm

    Mallika, I was waiting for this recipe and oh yes i am totally bowled over with your picture. I would love to try this and see as i never mixed tamarind and prawns!!

  13. Asha Says:

    November 20th, 2007 at 11:40 am

    East meets west kinda cookbook! I will check it out. I love authentic Indian cookbooks which records “grandmothers” cooking.
    Prawn looks yummy. Happy Thanksgiving!:))

  14. saju Says:

    November 20th, 2007 at 11:30 am

    How yummy! I love prawns, and these are delish! If you don’t mind I may use this recipe for starters for my Christmas day menu. Yummmmmmmmmm again

  15. Kalyn Says:

    November 20th, 2007 at 9:50 am

    This sounds like a wonderful recipe. I love tamarind, and I even have all the ingredients right now (what are the chances?) Saving to!

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