Tag Archives: coconut milk

Prawn Malai Curry

When the boulanger asked if I could do a fish curry for next Tuesday, my first reaction was to tell him honestly that I have very little experience cooking fish. But then I remembered that I made this Bengali curry, which combines prawns and coconut milk, once a long time ago and the girls did like it.

He was quite happy with that suggestion when I mentioned it so this is what I am going to make for next Tuesday along with some peas pulav, batata vada, mint-coriander chutney and carrot salad.

The classical chingri (that’s Bengali for prawn) malai curry does not include tomatoes I think, but I prefer to make it with them.

Prawn Malai Curry

10-12 medium-sized prawns (shelled and de-veined; so I like to use the frozen, ready-to-use variety)

1 small onion, chopped really fine

3 tablespoons of tomato puree

1 teaspoon each of ginger and garlic paste

a couple of bay leaves

1/4 teaspoon of garam masala powder

3/4 teaspoon of turmeric powder

1/2 a teaspoon of Kashmiri chilli powder

1 green chilli, slit in to half (optional)

salt to taste

3 tablespoons of oil

50 ml of packaged coconut milk (or a little less would be okay too)

3/4 cup of water

Soak the frozen prawns in some water for a few minutes, then drain the water and pat the prawns dry.

Mix the salt and turmeric in a large bowl and turn the prawns in this mixture gently to coat them well.

In a frying pan, heat the oil and fry the prawns till they are a golden color (don’t fry for too long else the prawns can become a little hard). Take them out and keep them aside.

In the same oil, add the bay leaves, fry for a minute, then add the green chilli and the onions and fry till they are a golden color. Now add the ginger and garlic pastes and fry everything for a couple of minutes, without letting the onions brown as this will affect the final color of the curry.

Add the tomato puree next and once the oil starts to appear on the sides, add the turmeric powder and the red chilli powder and fry everything for a minute. Now add the prawns, stir together everything well, then pour in the coconut milk and water. Simmer the curry for about 10 minutes or till it has the right consistency (not thin and runny, but it shouldn’t be too thick either).

Stir in the garam masala and garnish with fresh, chopped coriander leaves.

This curry is best eaten with plain, hot Basmati rice or a peas pulav, IMO and makes a great change from the more time-consuming chicken or lamb curries. It reminds me of that ad from long ago – I think it was the TV commercial for Maggie noodles when they were first introduced in India – “quick to cook, good to eat!”


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Carrot and Coconut Soup

Well, what this really is, is a tomato and carrot soup with packaged coconut milk added in towards the end of the cooking process.

The result is a delicious variation on an otherwise regular sort of vegetable soup in our home.

The girls loved it when I served it for dinner yesterday, so I was glad for the impulse that had made me reach for the pack of coconut milk and pour it in while the soup simmered.

The following quantities made enough soup for two meals for the 4 of us.

2 thin (which is what I had in the fridge yesterday) or 1 thick leek

6-7 large tomatoes

7-8 carrots

3 garlic cloves

4 tablespoons of olive oil

salt to taste

one 200 ml pack of coconut milk

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Rainy days are here again-Tomato Soup with coconut milk

Today has been one of those lazy days, when I have not wanted to do much of anything.

I was up until quite late last night, working, and managed to finish something that I had set for myself as a target for yesterday. That sort of makes me feel I can take things easier today.

So lunch for Shri and Noor today was just a sandwich (Actually, quite a yummy kind – built up with salad leaves, layered over with slices of tomato and mozzarella cheese, and a slathering of pesto on top, all packed in to a baguette or some nice olive bread that has been sliced through and has had some olive oil sprinkled over the insides), instead of the more effort/time intensive upma or poha that Noor would have liked.

When I opened the fridge to take out the cheese, I noticed that there were only 4 tomatoes left and so on impulse I decided that I’d make soup for dinner, one that uses coconut milk, and use those 4 tomatoes up before I bring a fresh lot tomorrow. Fortunately there is a little bit of the vegetable pasta salad left over from last night’s dinner, and a pizza in the freezer, so the soup will go nicely will all of that.

The rain that the colder weather and winds of the last 2 days presaged has started to come down in earnest during the afternoon, so they areĀ  going to be quite happy to eat soup for dinner, I think, especially since it is one that they like.

Tomato soup with Coconut milk

4 large tomatoes

60 ml of coconut milk

1/2 tsp of grated ginger

2 tsp of sunflower oil

1/2 tsp of cumin seeds

Wash the tomatoes boil the tomatoes (whole) in a saucepan with 200 ml of water till they go quite soft.

After they cool down, take the skins off, and blend the tomatoes. Strain the puree through a sieve.

In another saucepan, warm the oil and add the ginger. Once it starts to turn pink (don’t let it brown/burn), add the cumin seeds, wait till their aroma is released, then add the strained puree. Season with salt, and let the puree boil for 5-7 minutes. Stir in the coconut milk, a pinch of sugar if the taste is too sour and keep the mixture on the heat for only another couple of minutes.

Voila ! Doesn’t that seem quite simply done? And it is, really.

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