Have you ever tried prawn puri as a starter in an indian restaurant ? The puri does not refer to a ‘puree’ i.e. mashed food, but is the name of an indian bread which is flat and lightly fried – also called poori in some regions.
It is remarkably easy to make.
For the puri bread you need 2 1/2 cups of chapatti flour (low gluten atta flour) and one cup of water. Mix them together to form a dough, knead the dough, then wrap it in cling film and leave it in the fridge for at least 2 hours. You can leave it for a few days if you want to make it in advance. Knead it again and divide it into 6 portions. Roll each portion into a round and fry lightly in a frypan which has been lightly greased with some vegetable or peanut oil. If you like them buttery, you can butter the breads while they are still hot.
For the prawn bhuna you need:
½ tsp red chilli powder
1 tsp coriander powder
½ tsp cumin powder
½ tsp turmeric powder
½ tsp garam masala
1 tsp green masala paste
3 tbsp tomato paste
approx 6 large raw prawns per person with shells removed
- Blend one onion until mushy. Chop the other one into small pieces and fry it in oil and butter until soft.
- Put the dry spices in a large pan and add 1 tablespoon oil. Add half a cup of hot water. Cook to reduce the water by half.
- Add the green masala paste, tomato paste and mushy onion to the spice mixture.
- Cook for 10- 20 minutes until the’ rawness’ of the onion has dissipated.
- If the onions still taste hot, add half a teaspoon of sugar and stir well.
- Add the fried onions and cook for a further 5 minutes.
- Peel the prawns and rinse them. Stir the juice of half a lemon (or a whole lime) into the prawns, leave for a while to marinate, then when ready to serve add them to the curry sauce. Stir in some fresh coriander.
To assemble the prawn puri, place a puri on a plate, and spoon prawn bhuna over the top. If you like you can add some minty yoghurt sauce, onion salad or cucumber raitha. I often serve mine with some dhal. You can also serve the curry with chicken or crab instead of prawns.