If you love Asian food, you’ll go mad over these Chilli Garlic Prawns! The sticky sauce is spicy, sweet and garlicky and I think you will be surprised how few ingredients it requires. And when you taste it you will be amazed what great depth of flavour it has!
This takes 15 minutes to get on the table. Cross my heart. So start cooking the rice before you start these prawns (shrimp)!
When I go to a restaurant and try a dish I like, I usually have a fair chance of getting pretty close replicating the dish at home. Even if I can’t make something straight off the top of my head, I’ll know where to look to find a recipe to use as a base, or a Chef that makes something similar.
I promise I’m not trying to blow my own horn here (and I can’t do desserts!!), I’m just explaining how this recipe evolved. And it came to be after I had a Stir Fried Prawns (Shrimp) in Chilli Jam at a Thai Restaurant.
I was going to try to replicate it using a homemade Chilli Jam recipe, but then I got lazy. Instead, I tried to achieve the same flavours using a little bit of this, a little bit of that, a dash of this and a splash of that.
And what do you know? It came out darn delicious. Really, really tasty and pretty close to making this with a homemade Chilli Jam, but just a whole lot easier and faster.
I promise I’m not exaggerating when I say that this really does taste like Spicy Stir Fries you get from modern Asian restaurants. I don’t claim this to be authentic Asian because it probably isn’t an authentic Asian stir fry but every ingredient in the sauce is certainly used in many Asian dishes!
I served this with rice and steamed baby buk choy. Here is my real lazy but very effective way of steaming Asian greens. I know it is not environmentally friendly and one of my friends totally “had a go” at me about this, but I can’t help it, it’s ingrained in my DNA because it’s how my grandmother used to steam Asian greens!
All you do is rinse the vegetables under the tap, shake excess water off (but don’t dry), wrap in cling wrap then microwave for 1 1/2 minutes (or so). That’s it!
You can do this with most Asian greens – Chinese broccoli (gai lan), choi sum etc. And if you want a really great sauce to serve on steamed Asian Greens, try my Chinese Broccoli with Oyster Sauce which really does taste like what you get at Chinese Restaurants and Yum Cha (it’s made with more than just Oyster Sauce!).
Putting rice aside, and assuming you use raw peeled prawns / shrimp rather than peeling your own, my Chilli Garlic Prawns really is a 15 minute dinner. Here is how it goes down:
- Finely chop garlic and ginger (green onions/shallots and fresh red chilli is optional garnish);
- Cook prawns (3 minutes tops);
- Make sauce (4 minutes);
- Steam greens (1 1/2 minutes); and
- Serve and look like a hero!
Rice really is actually an inconvenience in this meal. I mean, it takes so darn long to make compared to everything else. 😉 – Nagi x
PS I know that I am usually a prawn snob and I really urge you to peel your own prawns but for a quick meal like this, pre-peeled is the way to go. Fresh, if possible. Frozen prawns are just not the same.
- 10oz / 300g prawns / shrimp (peeled and deveined)
- 1 tbsp vegetable oil (or canola)
- 1 tsp sesame oil
- 2 garlic cloves, minced
- 2 tsp ginger, grated or finely chopped (can be omitted)
- 1 - 2 tsp chilli flakes* (Note 1)
- ½ cup water
- 2 tbsp Sriracha (Note 2)
- 1½ tsp soy sauce, light or all purpose
- 2 tbsp brown sugar (or sub with white sugar)
- Sesame seeds
- Finely chopped shallots/scallions
- Finely chopped red chillies
- Coat prawns in vegetable oil. Heat well seasoned skillet or non stick pan over high heat. Cook prawns for 2 minutes, or until light golden and just cooked. (Note 3) Transfer onto a plate.
- Remove skillet from stove to cool down slightly, and decrease stove to medium.
- Add sesame oil into skillet, return to stove. When heated, add garlic, ginger and chilli flakes. Cook until garlic is fragrant and starting to turn golden.
- Add water, then remaining ingredients. Stir, increase heat to medium high, and let it simmer for 3 minutes or until the sauce starts to thicken to a syrup consistency.
- Return prawns into skillet and toss to coat in sauce and reheat, and cook until the sauce thickens a bit more.
- Garnish with sesame seeds, fresh chilli and shallots if desired. Serve with rice and steamed baby Buk Choy (Note 4)
1. Also known as Red Pepper Flakes. You could also use a jar of minced chilli or chilli paste but do not try to saute it with the garlic because it will spit everywhere! Stir it in when you add the water. Even this Masterfoods Chilli Paste from Woolworths in Australia is fine.
2. Sriracha is an Asian chilli sauce that is made with more than just chilli. It is now common in most supermarkets in Australia, US, Canada and UK. Hereis the one I use from Woolworths.
You can substitute with another hot sauce, even Frank's!
3. How to tell if prawns are cooked: Raw prawns hang straight by the trail, perfectly cooked prawns form a "C" and overcooked prawns will curl into an "O". Overcooked prawns have a rubbery texture and are not nice - so don't do it! :)
4. This is how I steam baby Buk Choy: Rinse under tap, shake off excess water, wrap with cling wrap and microwave for 1½ minutes on high. Remove cling wrap immediately (careful of steam) and serve!
5. Nutrition per serving, assuming 2 (generous) servings. Prawns and sauce only.
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Chilli Garlic Prawns nutrition per serving, assuming 2 (rather generous) servings.
Life of Dozer – The vet said to figure out a way to stop him from licking his injured paw. So I did. 😉
If you enjoyed my Asian Chilli Garlic Prawns (Shrimp), I think you’ll LOVE……
My Mongolian Beef – crispy beef tossed in a fabulous sticky sauce!
My Asian Glazed Salmon with a glorious sticky glaze!
Or to serve on the side, how about Chinese Fried Rice?