Indian cuisine is perfect at this time of year (actually, it is pretty darn good at any time of year). Spicy Prawn Stuffed Pancakes are very easy to make and don’t require any exotic, hard-to-find ingredients.
I have added a touch of five-spice powder to the pancake filling, even though it isn’t Indian, because I like the slight flavour of aniseed that it imparts to the prawn filling. The rest of the ingredients should be available at most supermarkets or Indian grocers.
Handy hint: practice making a pancake to ensure that the consistency of the batter is right. You may need to add more water or a little more flour. The batter will be a lot runnier than your normal pancake batter.
2 tablespoons vegetable oil
1 teaspoon cumin seeds
a good pinch of Chinese five-spice (optional)
6-10 curry leaves
1 onion, finely chopped
1 clove garlic
1/2cm piece of ginger, peeled
1 teaspoon garam masala
500gm green prawns, peeled and deveined
300gm rice flour
pinch of salt
water, (quantity will depend on the flour)
non-stick cooking spray or vegetable oil (for brushing)
To make the filling, heat the vegetable oil over a low heat in a heavy based frypan. Add the cumin and five-spice (if using) to the pan and cook until they become aromatic and darken slightly. Then add in the curry leaves and the chopped onion. Continue to cook, stirring occasionally, allowing the onion to soften but not brown.
While the onion is cooking, make a paste with the garlic and ginger. This can be done by either grating the garlic and ginger and then combining them together or crushing the ginger and garlic together in a mortar and pestle.
Chop the peeled and deveined prawns into three or four pieces and add them, as well as the garlic/ginger paste, to the pan with the onions. Continue to cook until the prawns are pink and tender. Remove the pan from the heat.
To make the pancake batter, combine the rice flour, salt and as much water as you need to make the batter of a pouring consistency.
Heat a non-stick frypan to a medium heat. Spray the pan with non-stick cooking spray or brush lightly with a little vegetable oil. Spoon a ladleful of the rice flour batter into the pan and spread into a thin circle using the back of the ladle. The pancake should look lacy and thin.
Cook until the pancake is a light golden colour and then flip the pancake to cook on the other side. Because of the thinness of the pancakes, cooking on the other side should only take a couple of seconds.
Arrange some of the spicy prawn mixture on the cooked pancake and either roll the pancake up or simply fold it over the filling. This will need to be done reasonably quickly because the pancake will become crisp as it cools.
Keep the filled pancakes warm while you prepare the remaining pancakes.
The seafood in this recipe was supplied by Princess Charlotte Seafoods ph: (07) 3256 9175. To check at which markets Princess Charlotte Seafoods will appear visit their website- www.pcseafoods.com.au.Reads: 2558