Jamie’s 30 Minute Meals #22: Thai Red Prawn Curry
This is our 22nd cooking/blogging experiment from Jamie’s 30 Minute Meals. For this one we chose “Thai Red Prawn Curry, Jasmine Rice, Cucumber Salad, Papaya Platter.” We picked it because we felt like doing a seafood recipe; we had the episode recorded; and we thought we had a good chance of the required produce being in season. The Snook was on duty for this one, and he managed it in 35:17. It was pretty darn good!
Substitutions: Our small prawns were frozen, but Jamie said on the show they were okay to use. We used coconut cream instead of coconut milk (since we already had some in the pantry). We didn’t bother with the prawn crackers. Other than that, everything was as written in the recipe!
Quick verdict: Well, the first thing you notice is… It wasn’t red! We think the Snook may have gone a bit overboard with the coriander when making the curry paste. It’s not really a problem though, because I’m addicted to coriander. This was one of those meals that ticks all my favorite flavour boxes: garlic, chilli, coriander, sesame oil, lime. It was very fresh and very yummy! The Snook thought the curry wasn’t very “curry,” but he still liked it. The cucumber salad was a revelation, and we ate the whole bowl between us. Unfortunately we weren’t able to use our oven for the crispy prawns (on account of it EXPLODING earlier in the day) but cooking them on the cooktop worked well enough. The fruit platter was simple but tasty. The Snook rated it 8.5, while I gave it a 9 out of 10. The preparation was slightly unusual, in that each dish was pretty much completed before moving on to the next (instead of interweaving the steps, as he does on the other recipes). Still, I think you could shave a few more minutes off this one with practice. Read on for a photo essay of the preparation.Pre-start prep: We got out all the necessary ingredients, tools, and cooking vessels. The kitchen was clean (well, as clean as it gets) and everything wiped down and ready to go. The kettle was boiled and the food processor equipped with the standard blade. We had a frying pan for the crispy prawns, a pot for the curry, and a saucepan for the rice.
First up are the ingredients for the cucumber salad: ginger, soy sauce, sesame oil, lime, cucumber, coriander, and red chilli.
Next are the bits for the rice: just basmati rice and jasmine tea bags.
Next are all the bits for the curry: lemongrass, red chilli, garlic, kaffir lime leaves, coriander, red peppers in oil, tomato paste, fish sauce, soy sauce, sesame oil, ginger, big raw tiger prawns, sugar snap peas, small frozen prawns, coconut cream, and lime.
Lastly, the ingredients for the dessert: papaya, Greek yoghurt, lime, bananas, mint, and biscuits.
Pots and pans, ready to go! Big pot is for curry; frying pan is for crispy prawns; saucepan is for rice.
Here we go! The Snook started by peeling and grating fresh ginger onto the serving dish for the cucumber salad.
He then added soy sauce, extra virgin olive oil, sesame oil, and the juice of a lime.
Then he used the peeler to slice off ribbons of cucumber into the bowl. (We don’t really have a proper speed-peeler, so that would probably save you a couple minutes of hassle.)
Next he finely sliced the stalks of a bunch of coriander…
…before adding them to the cucumber salad. A bit of finely chopped chilli finished it off.
Now on to the rice! He added one mug of rice to the saucepan with a pinch of salt, a splash of olive oil, two jasmine teabags, and two mugs of water. This was left to boil and then steam.
Next up is the curry paste. He started by bashing up some lemongrass.
The lemongrass got added to the food processor along with red chilli, garlic, and kaffir lime leaves.
He also added coriander (maybe a bit too much), jarred red peppers, tomato paste, fish sauce, soy sauce, sesame oil, and ginger.
This is the paste mid-blitz; he actually got it a bit finer than that in the end.
The large tiger prawns were tossed into a hot frying pan to begin cooking…
…to which a scoop of the curry paste was added. These were supposed to go under the grill, but the Snook left them to cook on the stove (since our oven is out of commission).
The Snook began the curry by combining sugar snap peas and small frozen prawns in the big pot.
He then added the remainder of the curry paste and let it stir fry for a bit.
To make the sauce, he added the coconut cream.
While the curry cooked, he started prepping the fruit platter. The papaya was cut in half and the seeds scooped out.
He grated a bit of lime zest over some Greek yogurt.
He added banana slices to the papaya, then squeezed lime juice over the platter.
The finished dessert platter with fruit, yoghurt, and almond biscuits.
Here’s the finished rice! He removed the jasmine tea bags and fluffed it with a fork.
The crispy prawns probably didn’t get quite as crispy as they would’ve in the oven, but they still looked good!
For the final step, he added coriander leaves to the curry.
And here’s the finished meal of jasmine rice, Thai “red” prawn curry, crispy prawns, and cucumber salad!
Tasting notes: We both really liked the cucumber salad, though it felt like more of a “pickle” than a salad, really. The Snook felt the curry was a bit non-traditional, but it was still tasty. The method of cooking the rice worked very well. I really liked the fruit dessert, but it was sure expensive! (Like $6 for the papaya and $3.50 for two bananas. OUCH.) We both preferred this one to the green curry, which had noodles rather than rice. If you’re a fan of Thai food, this is an easy meal to put together and would really impress a guest! I really enjoyed it.
Stay tuned for another recipe from Jamie’s 30 Minute Meals!