These beautiful prawns in a tamarind sauce are one of my very favourite Thai dishes. I just love the sweet sourness of the Tamarind fruit.
1/4 cup (60 ml) vegetable oil ( I use coconut oil)
2 small dried chillies
3 large garlic cloves, chopped
3 large fresh red chillies julienned
A small carrot julienned.
Sugar snap peas or mange tout( optional)
8 red shallots, sliced
3 red birds-eye chillies, chopped
60 ml ﬁsh sauce
60 ml tamarind puree
150 g soft palm sugar
1 tsp salt
200 ml water
To make the tamarind sauce, heat the oil in a deep heavy-based saucepan over high heat. Add the dried chillies, then deep-fry until crisp. Remove and drain on kitchen paper towel.
Add the garlic and large fresh chilli to the pan, cook for 1 minute. Add the shallot and continue cooking for another 1 minute, then add the birds-eye chilli, fish sauce, tamarind, palm sugar and salt and stir until the sugar has dissolved.
Crumble the deep-fried dried chillies. Carefully add the water and dried chilli to the sauce, then simmer over medium heat for 5 minutes. Put to one side.
Heat the vegetable oil in a deep heavy-based saucepan over medium heat. Place the prawns on a large ﬂat plate. Combine the tapioca ﬂour and rice ﬂour and sprinkle over the prawns to coat, then shake oﬀ any excess.Deep-fry a few prawns at a time in the hot oil for 6 minutes or until the prawns just change colour and are cooked through. Remove with a slotted spoon and drain on paper towel. Repeat with the remaining prawns.
Meanwhile, blanch the Chinese broccoli, carrots and peas ( if used) in a saucepan of boiling water for 1–2 minutes, then drain.
Pour 300g of the tamarind sauce into a small heavy-based saucepan and bring to the boil over medium heat. Leftover tamarind sauce can be stored in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 2 weeks.
Place the Chinese broccoli on a serving plate and top with the prawns. Drizzle with the hot tamarind sauce and garnish with coriander leaves and chilli. Serve with steamed rice.