Barbecued prawns with pepper sauce recipe

Neil Perry
BBQ king prawns with black pepper sauce.
BBQ king prawns with black pepper sauce. Photo: William Meppem

Fire up the barbie and get an Asian twist going on with these barbecued king prawns in a black pepper sauce.


12 extra-large green tiger king prawns, mid-section peeled

2 tsp vegetable oil           

3 tbsp julienned ginger, to serve

3 tbsp chopped chives, to serve       

⅓ cup coriander, to serve

For the black pepper sauce

1 tbsp whole black peppercorns

1 tsp whole white peppercorns

1½ tbsp cooking oil

2 small cloves garlic

¼ tsp of chilli flakes

60g unsalted butter

1 tbsp oyster sauce

2 tsp castor sugar

1 tbsp fish sauce

¼ cup chicken stock

¼ tsp cornflour with ¼ tsp water


1. For the black pepper sauce, toast the peppercorns in a pan over a medium heat for 1 minute, then grind roughly using a mortar and pestle, and reserve.

2. Pound the garlic and chilli using a mortar and pestle. Fry in oil in a wok over medium heat until fragrant (about 30 seconds), add peppercorns and fry, until almost smoking, for a further 30 seconds to 1 minute.

3. Add the sauce's remaining ingredients except the cornflour-and-water mix, and simmer until thickened slightly – about 2 minutes. Add cornflour mix slowly, until desired consistency is achieved (this will be dependent on the strength of their stove).

4. Preheat barbecue or grill pan on medium-high. Place prawns in a bowl, season, drizzle over oil, and toss to combine. Grill for 2-3 minutes, then turn over. Cook until the prawns turn opaque, red and just cooked.

5. Place prawns on a large platter, top with the pepper sauce, and garnish with ginger, chives and coriander.

Tip: Add a green base to this dish: stir-fry a couple of bunches of water spinach in a wok with a little oil, garlic, water, sea salt and white pepper, and top with oyster sauce and bird's-eye chilli slices.