Spicy Prawns with Coconut

My husband is a great cook and this is one of his suppers that we request on a frequent basis. He’s happy to oblige as the recipe is such a simple one and is quick and easy to prepare. It’s a great favourite of ours and is full of flavour. We always have this dish made with prawns, but cooked meat or vegetables would work just as well with the basic sauce. The sauce itself may be made in advance, the previous day if necessary, and may be kept in the fridge until needed. A great advantage to the busy working person! As an added bonus, this dish is gluten free. The quantities given here would be sufficient for 2 – 3 people, but may easily be adapted to feed more if necessary.



4 tablespoons of vegetable oil

1 large onion, chopped

4 garlic cloves, crushed or chopped finely

1 teaspoon of turmeric powder

1 teaspoon of chilli powder

2 teaspoons of dried coriander

½ teaspoon of ground ginger

½ teaspoon of salt

a shake of white pepper

2 tablespoons of white wine vinegar

200 ml of coconut milk (or the equivalent amount of liquid made from reconstituted coconut powder)

2 tablespoons of tomato purée

120g of peeled prawns per person



  • heat the oil in a roomy pan and fry the onion and garlic until they are soft
  • mix all of the spices, including the salt and pepper, together and mix them to a paste with the vinegar
  • add the spice mix to the pan of onions and continue to fry for a further three minutes, stirring all the time
  • stir in the coconut milk and tomato purée and then simmer everything together for five minutes
  • lastly, stir in the prawns and heat them through in the spicy sauce for a further 2-3 minutes


Serve at once with plain boiled rice, a generous garnish of fresh coriander and maybe a slice of lemon too!



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