Neil Perry's spicy tamarind prawn stir-fry

Neil Perry
Serve these spicy pawns with noodles or steamed rice.
Serve these spicy pawns with noodles or steamed rice. Photo: William Meppem

These prawns are delicious with steamed rice or over thin egg noodles. You could swap the prawns for sea scallops or diced white-fleshed fish – either way, consider tossing through some sliced seasonal asparagus. For a vegan version of this dish, cut an eggplant into 2cm cubes and fry with the other vegetables, substituting the fish sauce with soy or tamari. Enjoy.


2 tbsp vegetable oil

1 red onion, peeled and thinly sliced

½ red capsicum, seeded and cut into 5mm strips

2 cloves garlic, minced

8 large prawns, peeled and deveined

3 or 4 sprigs coriander

For the sauce

2 tbsp sugar

¼ cup tamarind puree

2 tbsp fish sauce

2 tsp sriracha sauce

juice of 1 lime


1. To make the sauce, combine the sugar, tamarind puree, fish sauce, sriracha sauce and lime juice in a small bowl, and stir to dissolve the sugar. Set aside.

2. In a wok or large skillet, heat the oil over high heat until almost smoking. Add the onion, capsicum and garlic and stir-fry until fragrant (about 30 seconds). Add the prawns and stir-fry for 1 minute, or until they have turned pinkish but are still translucent: you want them to be about half-cooked.

3. Pour the sauce over the prawns and stir to coat. Let the sauce come to the boil, continuing to stir for 1-2 minutes. The sauce will reduce and thicken, cooking the prawns through.

4. Spoon onto a deep plate, garnish with coriander, and serve immediately.