This chilli and pepper-inspired prawn stir-fry is an all-embracing fire-in-the-belly cook-up, softened by the addition of lime and lemongrass.
1 tsp coarse sea salt
1 tsp Sichuan peppercorns
1 tsp black peppercorns
1 tbsp light sesame oil or safflower oil
3 kaffir lime leaves, kept whole
3cm lemongrass stalk, cut into thin rounds
1kg whole green king prawns
½ tsp sambal oelek (fresh chilli paste), optional
2 tbsp fresh coriander leaves, roughly chopped
juice of 1 lime
Heat a wok and gently heat the salt, stirring until it turns grey (about 3 minutes). Pour into a mortar. Add the Sichuan and black peppercorns to the hot wok and dry-roast until fragrant. Grind with the salt to a coarse consistency in the mortar. Set aside.
Re-heat the wok and add the oil, followed by the lime leaves and lemongrass. Toss for a few minutes, add the prawns and stirfry for 3 to 5 minutes.
Spoon in the sambal oelek and ground pepper mix. Keep stirring for a few minutes longer, until the prawns turn red.
Remove from the heat and sprinkle with coriander leaves and a squeeze of lime juice.
Dish it up hot from the wok adorned with scorched peppercorns and serve with a refreshingly cool salad to quell the fire.