Taste wise prawns definitely are a very good choice. They become a better choice when you get to know that they are healthy as well. Prawns are not only a very good source of proteins but are low in fat and calories. Saturated fat, or let us say the unhealthy fat, that raises cholesterol levels is low in prawns. They are also rich in omega3 fatty acids, a heart friendly ingredient. Prawns also contain a rich source of Vitamin B12, iron, iodine, potassium, selenium, and phosphorus with traces of calcium, magnesium, and sodium. These vitamins and minerals are essential for good skin, teeth, and bones.
Prawns are available fresh and frozen. When buying prawns a few important points should be kept in mind. The shell of a prawn should be firm and glossy. A broken or slippery shell should be avoided. It should have a full white and firm body. Discoloured shells or meat are not a good choice.
Once bought, like all seafood, prawns should be immediately stored in the freezer compartment until preparation. Frozen prawns should be thawed only when required and once thawed should not be frozen again.
Now let us prepare some hot and spicy prawn curry to be served with hot and steaming boiled rice.
For the curry we will need the following ingredients:
500 gms de-veined and cleaned prawns
2 medium sized onions sliced
1 inch piece ginger
6-8 garlic cloves
1/2 tsp chilli powder
1tsp coriander powder
1 tsp cumin powder
½ tsp turmeric powder
2 tbsps thick tomato puree
3 tbsps oil
Salt to taste
Coriander leaves for garnishing
We need to first prepare the curry base. Grind the onion, ginger, and garlic to a fine paste. In a deep cooking dish heat the 3 tbsps of oil. Add turmeric powder to the hot oil immediately followed by the onion, ginger, and garlic paste. Take care that the turmeric does not get burnt. Add the desired amount of salt and cook. When the oil starts separating from the paste add the chilli, coriander, and cumin powder and cook for another 3-4 minutes. Add the tomato puree. Cook again until the oil separates and runs free. This is when the masala is completely cooked. It is very important that the masala is cooked well or it will give raw taste.
To this cooked masala add the prawns. Cook in masala for a minute or two and then add two cups of water. Cover and cook on low flame for a couple of minutes. Check consistency of gravy and adjust according to personal choice.
Garnish with coriander leaves and serve with steamed or boiled rice.