I remember back when I was at university, there were days where I would finish in the mid to late afternoon and I’d be ridiculously hungry after a whole blurred day of tutorials, lectures, study groups and research. I take the train home from Macquarie and transfer at Chatswood, however every Thursday I end up not making my immediate connecting train and instead slipping out of the station and towards the Thursday market stalls. There is a stall selling garlic prawns and chorizo at the end of the market, and its amazing aroma always wafts up towards the station and never fails to entice me to be a little late back home.
Sometimes I think I must be half-Mediterranean with how much I love garlic. Hence I tend to have an array of mouth-cleansing products in my bag all the time – regular spearmints (for mild, every day meal cases), spearmint chewing gum (for moments where something is wedged in your teeth), and Listerine strips (for moments where your mouth really does need a wash out).
But when you’re at home – who needs to worry about all of that? I picked this recipe out of Valli Little’s Faking It, and it’s absolutely the most perfect warm summer meal, had with a cold beer, accompanied by a salad or shoestring fries if you prefer. It’s finger-licking, messy, all-over-your-face goodness with the deliciously fragrant thick garlicky sauce.
To serve two, you will need:
- Half a kilo green king prawns;
- 40g unsalted butter;
- 1/4 teaspoon smoked paprika;
- 2 garlic cloves, finely chopped;
- Pinch of peri peri spice mix, chilli flakes or 1/2 teaspoon Tabasco (to taste);
- 1/3 cup (92ml) lager;
- 1 tablespoon chopped flat-leaf parsley.
With a pair of kitchen scissors, cut off the antennae and snip off the middle legs. Don’t mind the ones on the head as we won’t be eating the heads anyway. With a knife, halve the prawns lengthways through the middle. Remove vein, rinse, then pat dry with a paper towel.
Melt 20g of butter in a large frypan over medium-high heat. When sizzling, cook the prawns, in two batches, for one minute each side, then remove from the pan and set aside.
Melt the remaining 20g butter in the pan with the paprika, garlic and peri peri/chilli flakes/Tabasco. Cook, stirring, for one minute until fragrant.
Add the beer, increase the heat to high and cook for 2-3 minutes until the sauce thickens slightly.
Remove from the heat, add the prawns and parsley and toss to combine.
Serve the prawns with salad or shoestring fries, and a cold beer.