Category: Prawn

I had a meagre amount of prawns lying in the freezer. As I was on the lookout for recipes to use it up, I bumped into this recipe by Sandeepa. The original recipe idea belongs apparently belongs to her SIL. My refrigerator always stocks up Brinjals. I decided to give it a try. The recipe was a huge hit. Infact, when we licked off the bowl in which it was served at the end of our meal, Abbas said that his heart ached that such a yummy dish got over too soon. It will certainly feature in our meals frequently from now on.

Brinjal – 1 medium sized, cut into thin long strips like french fries
Onion – 3 medium sized, sliced
Ginger paste – 1 tsp
Garlic paste – 1 tsp
Tomatoes – 2 small, finely chopped
Green chillies – 3-4 or more as per spice tolerance
Coriander powder – 1 tsp
Cumin seeds – 1/2 tsp
Salt to taste
Mustard seeds – 1/2 tsp
Fenugreek seeds – 1/4 tsp
Prawns – 10-15 peeled, deveined, cleaned (I used 8 large ones)
Turmeric powder – 1 tsp
Coriander leaves – handful, chopped
Lemon juice – 1 tsp (Optional, actually I forgot this)
Oil – 6 tbsp + 1 tbsp
Sugar – 1/2 tsp

1. Marinate prawns with salt and turmeric powder. Shallow fry it, remove from oil. Once cooled, grind to a coarse paste and keep aside.
2. Marinate brinjal fingers in salt, turmeric powder and a pinch of sugar. Keep it aside for a while and then shallow fry them. (Addition of sugar reduces the amount of oil absorbed by brinajl)
3. In the same oil, add sliced onions and saute till golden brown.
4. Add ginger and garlic paste, saute till raw smell goes away.
5. Add chopped tomatoes, use the back of spatula to mash the tomatoes as you go sauteeing.
6. Once tomatoes turn mushy, add chillies, red chilli powder, cumin powder and coriander powder. and combine. Grind into a smooth paste once it gets cooled.
7. In a pan, heat a tbsp of oil. Add cumin seeds and fenugreek seeds.
8. When they splutter, add the fried brinjal fingers, ground masala paste and ground prawns. Add salt and a little water. Cover and cook till brinjals are cooked and the extra moisture dries out.
9. Garnish with coriander leaves and lemon juice.

Jamai Sasthi is a festival celebrated in West Bengal (not sure about other regions) which was very new to me as are several other Bong festivals. This day is special for sons-in law of Bengal. They are invited for a grand meal at their in-laws’ place and pampered to the zenith. Mothers-in-law observe fasting on that for the well being of their son-in-law or Jamai. A platter full of exquisite dishes is spread for the Jamai and he gets special honour and is under the limelight. Fathers-in-law get busy with shopping for their Jamai leaving no stone unturned to make this day special for him.
When in Kolkata, all my married colleagues wrapped up work as early as possible and rushed to leave for the day. The glow on all married men’s faces looking forward to the feast and special treatment was worth watching. Abbas always sported a sad face as he would never get this ‘Jamai Adar’. So, I would always cook something special and tell him – “What if you don’t get to be a part of Jamai Sasthi? We will have Bor and Chele Sasthi for you!” (Bor meaning Husband and Chele meaning Son)
How I wished there was ‘Bou-ma Sasthi’ as well observed by mothers-in-law for their daughters-in-law. What say women???
Well, this dish is one of the must-haves on a Jamai Sasthi menu along with other delicacies. Here goes:
Prawns – 400g, deshelled, deveined and cleaned
Mustard Oil – 3 tbsp
Cumin seeds – 1/2 tbsp
Ginger paste – 1 tbsp
Garlic paste –  1 tbsp
Cumin paste – 1 tbsp
Chilli powder – 1 tsp
Green chillies – 6, slit
Turmeric powder – 1 tsp
Salt to taste
Sugar – 1 tsp
Garam masala – 1 tsp (Cardamom, Cloves and Cinnamon – pounded or powdered)
Coconut milk – 1 1/4 cup (I used Maggi Coconut Milk powder)
Ghee – 2 tsp
1. Marinate prawns in a pinch of turmeric powder and salt. Shallow fry in oil and keep aside.
2. Heat mustard oil in a pan and add sugar and cumin seeds.
3. When cumin seeds splutter, add ginger paste, garlic paste, cumin paste, red chilli powder and turmeric powder and saute.
4. Add prawns and slit green chillies and stir for a few minutes.
5. Pour in the coconut milk and salt, cook for few minutes.
6. In the end sprinkle garam masala and ghee on top and serve.

Sungta Hinga Udka Randayi literally transaltes to Prawn Asafoetida Water Curry which simply makes Amchi’s mouth water… One of my favourites


Shrimp – 1/2 kg, deshelled, deveined and cleaned
Coconut gratings – 1 cup
Red chilli powder – 1 tbsp or according to ur spice tolerance

Asafoetida/ Hing – 1tbsp (use LG Hing according to ur hing tolerance)

Tamarind – 1 small marble sized

Salt to taste
Coconut oil – 2 tbsp

1. Grind together coconut, red chilli powder and tamarind to a fine paste.

2. Simmer this masala for a few minutes .

3. Add the washed shrimps in the simmering masala adding very little water because the water leaves out as soon as the shrimps r added. Simmer till the shrimps are cooked.

4. Add salt to taste and asoefotida powder. Drizzle coconut oil in the simmering masala.

5. Stir well and serve withe rice. Yummy…

Yet another dish from Geeta Pachhi’s kitchen that’s sure to tingle tongues and win hearts!!!
Shrimp – 1 kg 
Chilli powder – 3 tbspn 
Onion – 2 big onions, sliced 
Garlic cloves – 3, mashed 
Tamarind pulp – 2 tbspn 
Oil – 5 tbspn (preferably coconut oil) 
1. Peel the shrimp and devein them.Wash thoroughly in the water 5 to 6 times. 
2. Add the shrimp heads cleaning them thoroughly (optional). Keep aside.
3. Heat oil. Add chopped onion, mashed garlic and fry till they become brown in color.
4. Add the chilli powder and tamarind pulp and stir for 1 minute.
5. Add the washed shrimps. After a while the shrimp gets cooked and the water comes out from the shrimp , add salt to taste.
6. Simmer till all the water evaporates and the curry becomes dry.
7. Serve with rice and dal

Chilli powder is mentioned as 3 tbsp as Byadgie (less spicy) chilli powder is used here. If using a spicy chilli powder, add as per spice tolerance.

Prawn Biriyani

My Amma made two versions of Prawn biriyani – Red and Green. As soon as Annu (dad) would get fresh prawns, we would vote for Green or Red. Irrespective of the colour, both tasted heavenly. I don’t remember the recipe for Green version but Red is the easiest with minimal ingredients and simple cooking procedure. This recipe was my Dad’s sister’s whom we too call Akka. If I remember right, she had sent this recipe to Sanjeev Kapoor’s cookery contest and won a reward. Beenakka, thanks for this wonderful recipe!
Prawns 1 cup – deshelled, deveined and cleaned
Onions – 3 medium  sized, sliced
Salt – to taste
Cumin seeds – 1/2 tsp
Bay leaves – 2
Oil – 2 tbsps
For the masala:
Red chillies – 10-15 (or as per taste)
Cumin seeds – 2 tsp
Garlic – 1 tbsp
For the rice:

Basmati rice – 3 cups
Tejpatta – 2-3 (optional)
Cloves – 3-4 (optional)
Cinnamon – 1”inch piece broken into small pieces (optional)
Cardamom – 3-4 (optional)
Black pepper – 4-5 (optional)
Jeera – 1 tsp (optional)
Red chilli – 1 (optional)
Vinegar – 1/2 tsp
Oil – 1tsp
Salt to taste


To prepare Rice:
1.Boil water in a vessel along with the whole garam masalas.
2. When the water starts boiling, add the rice, vinegar, salt and 1 tsp of oil.
3. Keep checking the rice until it is almost done but not fully done.
4. Strain the water away.
5. Immediately spread the rice in 2-3 plates. This prevents the rice from being sticky or stops it from cooking further.

To Prepare Prawn Masala:
1. Heat oil in a pan. Add cumin seeds and bay leaves.
2. Saute oinions on low flame till translucent or light golden brown.
3. Add the ground masala and again saute till oil startes oozing from the edges.
4. Add prawns, salt and saute till they are well cooked.

You may either layer the rice and prawn masala as in a Biriyani or lightly mix them taking care not to break the rice grains by mixing vigorously. Tastes best when it is left to stand for 3-4 hours. (We siblings used to fight over the leftovers next day)

1. Prawn can be replaced by fish. Use fish with least bones. Lightly boil fish pieces so that removing bones would be easier.
2. I have given the method of preparing rice as in Biriyani. You could even you plain rice but make sure you add salt while preparing rice.

Ma’s face crumples up as soon as a spoonful of bland food lands on her tongue. She blurts out “Ekdom jhaal hoi ni” (Meaning – not spicy at all). I always cooked hot spicy food but have been compromising on chillies ever since Mannu Tammu began sharing our food. Ma, at several times, reminds me of my Annamma (grandma). My amma had a tough time planning what to cook. Everybody at home had diverse preferences. This was a dish Amma would prepare when Annamma would not be eating well due to sickness saying “Jibbe Ruchi Na” (Meaning – my tongue has become senseless). This would ignite Annamma’s taste buds and make her eat. I tried this trick on Ma once too but she didn’t even let her tongue taste it, leave alone igniting it. Reason? She is allergic to prawns. Kosha Mangsho is an all-time winner with Ma although she is allergic to Mutton too! (That’s called situational allergy he he)
Here goes the original recipe. However I, at times add cubed potatoes, just to give it that Bengali touch. I would suggest cooking this gravy in the morning if you wanna have it for dinner coz the standing times simply boosts the taste. Nevertheless, it tastes great even when had immediately.


Prawns – 1 cup, peeled, deveined and cleaned
Onions – 2 large, finely chopped
Tamarind extract – ½ cup
Green chillies – 2, slit
Red chilli powder – to taste (ideally the hotter the better for me)
Salt – to taste
Oil – 2 tbsp
Water – 1 cup

1. Heat oil in a pan. Add slit green chillies and chopped onions and sauté till they turn light golden in colour.

2. Add prawns and sauté on low to medium flame till they are well cooked.

3. Add salt, red chilli powder, tamarind and water.

4. Cook till the gravy achieves your desired consistency.

Chingri Macher Malai Bhapa

Prawn Malai Curry is a rich Bengali delicacy. This dish came up when I tried to use the same ingridients but followed an unconventional cooking procedure.

Jumbo Prawns – 500 gms, deveined and cleaned
Mustard Oil – 2 tsp (I would suggest not to substitute mustard oil with any other oil coz it gives the dish the perfect touch)
Coriander Leaves – to garnish

Grind Together:

White Mustard Seeds– 2 tsp
Coconut Milk – ½ Cup
Green Chillies – 4-5 (Or according to taste)
Turmeric Powder – ¾ tsp
Salt – To taste

Mix together all the ingredients. Sprinkle a few drops ofmustard oil on top and steam for 15-20 mins. If you do not have a steamer, you may follow the procedure that I did. Take a small bowl and place it inverted in the center of a pressure cooker. Add about a cup of water. Place the marinated prawns in a bowl on top of the inverted bowl and close it with a lid. Pressure cook for 4-5 whistles. If you think the water level has reduced in between, then remove the lid and put some more water and pressure cook again.