Monday, March 23, 2009

Shrimp, it's what's for dinner ...

My mom would always ask me when I still lived at home, "What should I cook for dinner?"

Sometimes it's just enough that you have a craving for Mexican, or Thai. But sometimes, just sometimes you need a new idea, a push in another direction, something to narrow the endless possibilities.

I love cooking home food. Things that are manageable. Unlike WD-40 and inverse eggs benedict, or olives macerated and remade into olives, home food depends on a realistic budget and amount of time and energy put into what hopefully will be a tasty and delicious meal.

If you're not a regular cook of Indian food, you might have to run out for a few spices, but I promise the result is rewarding!

This is a curry without ginger or garlic. I'm guessing because of Kerala's location is southerly and closer to Thailand, that's why there's coconut included in the dish.

Prawns in Kerala Curry

4 T butter
1/2 t black peppercorns
1 t mustard seeds
1/2 t fenugreek seeds (these are also called methi)
1 large onion chopped
1/2 t ground turmeric
1 green serano chile deseeded and minced
1 can of tomatoes (we love Mutti in our household)
1 t salt
1/4 lb shrimp
1 T tamarind paste
1/2 c seafood stock (I use clam stock found in Korean and perhaps Japanese grocery stores)
1/2 can coconut milk

Melt butter, add chopped onion, peppercorns, mustard and fenugreek seeds. Saute until golden brown. Add the ground spices tomatoes and salt. Break up tomatoes and cook down until most of the water is gone. Sir in the tamarind paste and stock and simmer down. Stir in the coconut milk and simmer and taste to see if the spicing is right. Add the shrimp and simmer for a few minutes until the shrimp are ready.

Serve with steamed rice. I like to serve it with some mango chutney on the side.

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