South Indian Prawn Curry

South Indian Prawn Curry by Vancouver based super chef Vikram Vij owner of VIJ’s.

A little bit of a spicy smooth sensation with this curry dish – A whole new method of cooking shrimp with these mix of spices.

Delicious flavours mixed into this unique curry taste.

Servings: 6

Total Time: 20 minutes


  • 36 to 42 prawns
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 cup ghee or cooking oil
  • 1 tablespoon cumin seeds
  • 3 cups finely chopped red onions
  • 1 teaspoon turmeric
  • 1 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 1 teaspoon chopped jalapeno pepper
  • 1 tablespoon fresh ginger, finely chopped
  • 1/2 cup tamarind juice
  • 1/2 cup chopped cilantro
  • 1 cup coconut milk


1.  Peel and devein prawns. Heat ghee or oil in a large frying pan on medium to high heat for 1 minute.
2.  Sprinkle in cumin seeds and allow them to sizzle for about 45 seconds.
3.  Add onions and sauté until golden brown.
4.  Reduce heat to medium and add turmeric, salt and cayenne.
5.  Sauté for 1 minute, then add jalapeno pepper and ginger. Sauté for 1 more minute.
6.  Add tamarind juice and bring it to a boil. Add prawns and stir gently for about 5 minutes or until prawns are orange-pink and firm, then add coconut milk and cook for three more minutes.
7.  Stir in the cilantro and serve with basmati rice.

Wine Pairings

Shrimp may be delicate and commonly paired with light wines, but the sauce here is anything but timid. Choose an outgoing white from the so-called aromatic family, such as riesling, gewürztraminer, viognier or, a specialty of Argentina, torrontes. The intensely fruity quality of the wine will cut the heat in the same manner as the traditional non-alcoholic drink often served in Indian restaurants, mango juice. Steer clear of lean, crisp and relatively shy wines such as pinot grigio. And please don’t squander a red; it will only get caught in the cayenne-jalapeno crossfire. – Beppi Crosariol

Recipe courtesy of Globe & Mail


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