I wish prawns (shrimp) kept better or that I felt comfortable freezing them. I always feel that I need to eat prawns either the day I get them or the next day at the latest. According to this website you can freeze them but it does sound a bit tricky to get right and I would hate to give myself food poisoning.
I have bought frozen prawns but I never feel like they have quite the flavour of the ones I see at the fish market. And I know this is probably all in my head as I am sure that most of the prawns I see at our local fish market have probably been frozen in a previous life, which now that I think about it is another reason not to freeze them. Defrosting and refreezing is definitely not the way to go unless there is cooking in between the defrosting and refreezing.
This all means that I don’t eat prawns nearly as much as I would like to. On the weekends, I like to plan meals that take a bit more time to cook. During the week I want food that is quick to cook so it is on the table in good time. If I have to wait for ages then I find myself snacking which is rarely a good thing. My snacks don’t travel on the healthy side of the street. The weekends are the time then for me to make casseroles and pies and other delicious things that require more cooking time.
Prawns don’t naturally fall in to this category, in fact I think of them as great for super-fast meals. But I do my shopping on Saturdays so hence the dilemma. Give up the casseroles and eat quick on the weekend or risk dodgy prawns. At least that is my winter dilemma. Summer not so much, when the idea of a casserole is the furthest thing from my mind.
But I saw this delicious recipe for sweet and spicy Moroccan prawns (shrimp) and decided it was worth the sacrifice. Talk about first world problems. Giving up casseroles for prawns. It does make me realise how lucky I am.
Luckily these prawns are so worth the sacrifice. The ingredient list does look pretty long but I found that I had all the spices in my cupboard – there aren’t any that I think are way out there. Plus it really is just a long list of spices so the only job you need to do is measuring them out, no chopping involved which is always a bonus for me if I want a quick meal. The only thing that can take time is shelling the prawns but I just bought some green prawn meat which was good to go.
As the title suggests the prawns are sweet and spicy, a combination I just love and the flavour of the prawns is a lovely juxtaposition to all the spices.
To make this for one I used the following:
- 1 tsp all-purpose flour
- 1/4 teaspoons paprika
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
- 1/4 teaspoon ground cumin
- 1/8 teaspoon chili powder
- 1/8 teaspoon brown sugar
- 1/8 teaspoon ground coriander
- A pinch of ground ginger
- A pinch of ground turmeric
- A pinch of cinnamon
- A pinch of cayenne pepper
- A pinch of black pepper
- A pinch of ground cardamom
- 200g of green prawn meat (shrimp)
- 1/2 tablespoon of olive oil
The recipe is so straightforward – mix together all the ingredients except the prawns, coat the prawns in the spice mix and then fry the prawns in the oil until cooked. I find the easiest way for me to coat the prawns is just to mix the spices in a bowl and then dump in the prawns. I then just use my hands to make sure everything is evenly coated. If you buy pre peeled prawns then the preparation time is about 5 minutes but if you buy prawns with the shells on I would allow another 5-10 minutes to prepare the meal. It takes about 10 minutes to do the mixing and cooking. You don’t want to under or over cook the prawns. I normally fry prawns until they change colour then whip them off the heat as they will continue cooking after they are removed from the stove.
The trick to making this for one is to keep the balance of spices about the same – if you have too much spice mixture that isn’t a problem as you will just have some of the mix leftover after coating the prawns. A little bit of wastage but nothing too dire.
The added bonus is that the dish is only about 270 calories. A great low calorie dinner.