Gulf News 'Your Ramadan Table': Prawn curry with coconut milk

Gulf News 'Your Ramadan Table': Prawn curry with coconut milk

Chef John Buenaventura’s vegan seafood curry for a satisfying meal

Video Credit: Anas Thacharpadikkal/ Gulf News

Preparation Time: 20 minutes

Cooking Time: 25 minutes

Serves: 2 to 3


500 gms Tiger prawns (peeled and deveined)

2 tbsp Red chilli powder

1 tbsp Coriander powder

1/2 tbsp Turmeric powder

1 tbsp Black pepper powder

1/2 tsp Cumin powder

5 gms Ginger-garlic paste

50 gms Coconut milk powder

30 ml Tamarind pulp

50 gms Red onion

50 gms Tomato

1 tbsp Mustard seeds

2 Sprigs curry leaves

Salt to taste

5 gms Coriander powder

1 tbsp Lemon juice

4 tbsp cooking oil

Cooked jasmine rice, as needed


In a bowl, combine the prawns with one tablespoon of oil, ½ teaspoon of turmeric powder, salt, ¼ tsp of pepper, 1/4 teaspoon cumin powder, ½ tablespoon coriander powder, one tablespoon chilli powder, and a squeeze of lime juice. Mix well and marinate for 20 minutes.

Now, soak the tamarind in warm water for 5 to 10 minutes. Strain the tamarind liquid, discarding the solids.

Heat oil in a pan over a medium flame. Add the mustard seeds and let them splutter. Once they pop, add the curry leaves and sauté for a few seconds. Then, add the sliced onion and crushed ginger-garlic and cook until golden brown.

Next, add the coriander powder, cumin powder, chilli powder, black pepper, and turmeric powder. Sauté for another minute, allowing the spices to release their aroma.

Pour in a little water (start with 1/4 cup and add more if needed) and bring to a simmer. Add the sliced tomato and continue to cook until softened.

Add the marinated prawns. Once the prawns are half cooked, add tamarind liquid. Cover the pan and cook for 10 to 15 minutes or until the prawns are fully cooked.

Prepare the coconut milk by mixing the coconut milk powder with warm water, and then set it aside.

Once the prawns are cooked, stir in the prepared coconut milk, and adjust the seasoning with salt.

Turn off the flame and garnish with a sprig of fresh curry leaves and chopped coriander leaves. Serve hot with cooked jasmine rice.


Substitute lobster for prawns if desired.

Adjust the amount of water added based on the desired consistency of the curry. The tomatoes and prawns will release their juices, so be mindful not to add too much water initially.

This is my favourite curry recipe for any day of the week. It’s quick and easy to prepare after a long day, and when paired with rice, it instantly lifts your mood. Give it a try at home, and you’ll see what I mean!

- Chef John Buenaventura, Executive Chef and Host of Your Ramadan Table by Gulf News

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