Using Prawns in Indian Cooking
Prawns are crustaceans and come in different sizes and types. They have a firm meaty texture with a delicate delicious sweetness. Over the years prawns have gone from a speciality seafood to becoming an everyday ingredient.
Prawns need to be cooked fairly quickly but if they are overcooked they can have an unpleasant texture. They have grey flesh when they are raw which turns into a beautiful shade of pink once cooked. They can be grilled, boiled, fried, barbecued, battered you name it.
General rule is that you eat cold water prawns (which are smaller, peeled and cooked) cold in salads or starters and warm water prawns such as King or Tiger for cooking with. These must be cleaned, deveined and peeled.
You can buy prawns frozen, fresh, raw, cooked, with or without shells - go for the type that best suits your dish.
There is a huge issue around the sustainability of prawns so ideally you should try to eat prawns as a treat and when you do buy those which are produced from a sustainable organic source or a certified fishery. You can always explore other options as well - if you like seafood try mussels, clams, razor clams. The most sustainable sources of prawns come from the North East Arctic and Canada.
Prawns work so well with Indian sauces and flavours a real favourite in south Indian cooking. Especially with the addition of a little lemon or tamarind zing to balance the sweetness of the meat.Back to Cooking guides