Tuesday, October 7, 2008

Eral thokku (Prawns in spicy tomato sauce)

I cook prawns at home about four times a year....and the frequency has gone down even more after moving to Delhi. One of the reasons is that I like my prawns delivered home, fresh and cleaned. A rather difficult combination - you usually get frozen prawns cleaned and delivered, fresh prawns are not that easy to get delivered. The other reason is that we tend to order prawns for our meals if we go out to a seafood restaurant and not being big meat eaters don't really miss it all that much.

So, I was more than a little surprised when Hubby suggested we have prawns for Sunday lunch at home. At first I thought he was joking, then closer to lunch time when I asked him again, he said the same thing. Well, I decided then, that at such short notice we would have to do with frozen prawns from the local frozen meats guy. C R Park has an amazing sea food market and is just 5 minutes away from home, but there was no way I was going to negotiate that smelly territory, bargain with the guy and then wait there while it was cleaned!

I usually choose medium sized prawns - I have found that the Jumbo prawns, while they look great aren't as tender as the smaller ones. Marinated them and then stepped out for some grocery shopping. Back after an hour, an onion - tomato base sauteed with spices and the prawns added at the end for about 5 minutes and presto! one lip smacking dish ready for lunch!

I'm sending this dish to this month's edition of Monthly Mingle - Sensational Sides - being hosted by Ruth. Monthly Mingle is the brainchild of Meeta of What's for Lunch Honey.

Eral thokku
Prawns - 300gms
Onions - 2 big finely chopped

Tomatoes - 2 big finely chopped

Garlic cloves - 2-3

Chilli powder - 1 tsp

Coriander powder - 1 tsp

Curry leaves - 6-8

Mustard seeds - 1 tsp

Oil - 1 tbsp

1. Clean the prawns (devein and shell if not already done) thoroughly, making sure they don't have any veins left.

2. Marinate with half a tsp of tumeric powder and a little salt and refrigerate for about half an hour.

3. Heat the oil in a heavy bottomed pan, add the mustard seeds and when they splutter, add the curry leaves.

4. Put in the chopped onions and garlic and saute for about 5-7 minutes till it is translucent.

5. Add the chopped tomatoes and saute till they become pulpy.

6. Put in the chilli powder, coriander powder and salt and fry for 3-4 minutes. Add 1/4 cup of water and bring to boil.

7. Reduce flame and simmer, add the marinated prawns and cook covered for 3-4 minutes. Prawns when overcooked tend to get rubbery. If they are fresh they can be cooked for about 5 minutes, frozen prawns may be pre cooked and require lesser cooking time.

8. Turn off the heat, serve warm with rice or rotis.


Cham said...

U know what I ate only seafood when I was in India, after marr now It is only once upon a time story.... Once in a while I cook prawns, now the bowl makes me drooling...;)

Meeta said...

Here in germany we find some very good quality frozen prawns/seafood. So, a lot of my fish dishes will be frozen. I also like the comfort of having a bag of fish/prawns in the freezer and one can make a dish on the spur of the moment. This sounds great!

Happy cook said...

I love prawns. This looks really delicious.
Yeah even i think the deep freeze prawns are not that tasty, but then here one has to settle for that.

Ruth E said...

This looks delicious!!!! A great entry to the mingle, thank you!

supersamayal said...

This dish is great. Keep going.