This Hot Prawn Madras Curry is composed of a spicy tomato & coconut milk based curry sauce, studded with cooling juicy prawns and is a total delight.
Oh my goodness, I am over the moon with this recipe!
The rich and creamy sauce will make your kitchen smell just incredible whilst it’s cooking.
And with it being on the table in just 20 minutes, it makes the perfect midweek meal, or speedy one pot camping dish.
Make Your Own Madras Spice Blend
Whilst you can absolutely pick up a Madras spice blend from the supermarket, it is so quick and easy to make your own.
Not only does this give you a more pungent taste, as the spices are toasted and ground freshly. But it also keeps the spices in your kitchen constantly used, and therefore fresher. Win win!
When making this spice blend at home, I first toast the whole spices to bring out their aromatics. And then I ground them in my electric coffee grinder.
However, if you are camping, or don’t have a coffee grinder. Check out my video below to see how I grind them ‘off grid’ in Myrtle the camper van!
Any leftover spices can be stored in a small glass jar or Ziploc bag for the next time you fancy making a madras.
Using prawns for the protein in this curry is the key to making it such a quick meal. I used frozen prawns that I defrosted before I started cooking. Feel free to use fresh ones, but be sure they have enough time in the curry sauce to cook through completely before serving.
I have made this madras with various different types and sizes of prawns over the years. However hands down my favourites are the large and juicy king prawns. As they are so big, and in the madras sauce for such a short amount of time, the spices don’t have time to sink deep into the flesh.
Therefore, when you bite into one, you are hit by a sweet, clean and cooling burst which makes the perfect contrast to the hot and spicy curry!
Hot Prawn Madras Curry
To make the prawns go further, add in some vegetables to your taste. Peas would work well, as would sliced peppers. Or you could really bulk it out by cooking some new potatoes in the sauce before adding in the prawns.
Oh, and don’t forget if the prawns you source are grey in colour, it means they are raw. They will need a minute or two extra cooking time than the pink ones that I used.
As far as heat goes, obviously set the heat levels to your personal preference. I used a tablespoon of chilli flakes in my curry. But I remade it yesterday on a batch cooking day with my bestie and only used a teaspoon. And it still tasted gorgeous.
Likewise, if my ‘hot’ is your version of a korma, go pump it up ;)
If you give this hot prawn madras curry recipe a go, please do let me know what you think of it!
And as promised, here’s me making an off-grid version in Myrtle the Campervan :)
- 1 tablespoon coriander seeds
- 1 tablespoon black peppercorns
- 3 cloves
- 1 teaspoon fennel seeds
- 1 tablespoon chilli flakes
- 2 inches fresh turmeric
- 2 inches fresh ginger
- 4 cloves garlic
- 1 red pepper
- 6 banana shallots or 1 large onion
- 1 tablespoon of your favourite fat or oil
- 1 carton passata or chopped tinned tomatoes
- 1 can coconut milk
- 450 g prawns defrosted
Heat a heavy saucepan and dry fry (with no oil) the coriander seeds, peppercorns, fennel seeds and cloves for 1-2 minutes or until they release their spicy aroma.
Remove from the hot pan, add the chilli flakes and grind together into a powder either in a pestle & mortar or coffee grinder. Put to one side.
Process the fresh turmeric, ginger, garlic, pepper and shallots in a food processor until it is a puree. Heat the oil in the saucepan and fry the puree for a few minutes (do not let it burn).
Add in the spices, passata and coconut milk, stir well and simmer for 5 minutes with the lid off until the sauce has thickened a little.
Add in the defrosted, cooked prawns and let simmer for 2-3 minutes or until the prawns are piping hot. Serve as is if you are paleo or with rice and popadoms for an authentic Indian meal.
This post was initially published in 2016 and has been updated in 2019.