3 lemongrass stalks, white part only
3 onions, coarsely chopped
3 garlic cloves
60ml (¼ cup) sunflower oil
2 pandan leaves, tied together in a knot
2 tbs fish curry powder
4 roma tomatoes, seeded, cut into 1cm pieces
270ml can coconut milk
250ml (1 cup) coconut water
1kg raw tiger prawns, peeled, deveined, tails intact, heads reserved
2 tsp sea salt
1 tsp sugar
1 tsp soy sauce
1 tsp fish sauce
2 tsp lime juice
Vegetable oil, to deep-fry
1 tsp ground black pepper
1 tsp fish curry powder
Coriander, sliced chilli and lime wedges, to garnish
LEMONGRASS JASMINE STEAMED RICE
2 lemongrass stalks, white part only, bruised, chopped into 6cm pieces
4 kaffir lime leaves, torn
4cm-piece ginger, coarsely chopped
300g (1½ cups) jasmine rice
1. Process lemongrass, ginger, onion and garlic in a food processor until a paste forms.
2. Preheat a large frying pan or wok over medium heat. Add sunflower oil. Once smoking, add lemongrass paste, pandan leaves and prawn heads and sauté for 3-5 minutes or until fragrant and caramelised.
3. Blend curry powder with 2-3 tbs of water to make a paste. Add to pan or wok and cook, stirring, for 3-4 minutes or until fragrant. Add tomatoes and fry for 3-5 minutes, then pour in coconut milk and coconut water and simmer for 2 minutes. Using tongs, remove and discard prawn heads.
4. Add prawns, half the salt, sugar, soy sauce and fish sauce and cook, stirring occasionally, for 5-6 minutes or until prawns are almost cooked. Remove from heat. Season with lime juice, cover and leave for 5 minutes to finish cooking.
5. To make rice, place 1.5L (6 cups) water in a large saucepan. Add lemongrass, kaffir lime leaves and ginger and bring to the boil. Add rice and cook for 13-15 minutes or until tender. Drain and discard aromatics.
6. Fill a deep-fryer or large saucepan one-third full with vegetable oil and heat over medium heat to 180C (or until a cube of bread turns golden in 10 seconds). Combine flour, pepper, curry powder and remaining salt in a bowl. Add reserved prawn heads and toss well to coat.
7. Working in batches, drop prawn heads into the oil and fry, turning halfway, for 4-5 minutes or until crisp and golden. Remove with a slotted spoon and drain on paper towel. Season with salt.
8. Divide rice among serving bowls and spoon over curry. Top with prawn heads, coriander and chilli. Serve with lime wedges to the side.
This recipe has been tested.