Every once in a while, there is a dish from a restaurant that sticks with me. One evening, about 8 years ago in Melbourne, I dined with my husband at Circa at ‘The Prince’ in St Kilda. It was fairly soon after it had opened, and it was still well and truly in its hey-day, a food style-leader in Melbourne, and in fact Australia. That night, among other things, I had a prawn dish, with the most perfectly crisp and delicious casing – knaffe pastry.
Just recently I purchased Suzanne Husseini‘s new cookbook, and what did I find in there? Prawns with knaffe pastry. Hers are with orange and lemon rind and stuffed with almonds, and they are amazing. Of course, I can’t put her recipe here, so I brainstormed a little – I really enjoyed the sweetness of the almonds with the sweetness of the prawn flesh, and that got me thinking about korma.
Korma is a curry sauce that is made with a cream and nut base – either almonds or cashews. But as far as I’m concerned, the almonds just don’t cut it for this sauce – cashews are far creamier. Most of the work is done in the blender, so it’s super easy to cook.
- 1/2 cup of cashews
- 1 large carrot, diced roughly
- 1 large onion, diced roughly
- 3 cloves garlic, peeled
- 1/2 cup of tinned tomato or passata
- 1 tsp ground cumin
- 2 tsp ground coriander
- 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
- 1/4 tsp ground cardamom
- 1/4 tsp ground cloves
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 1 tsp chilli flakes
- 1/2 cup of cream
- whiz all items except the bottom two in a blender
- simmer covered on the stove for about 25 minutes, stirring intermittently
- Add the final two ingredients, combine well over heat, then serve with prawns.
- Knaffe Pastry – about 1/3 of a packet
- 20 large prawns – peeled and deveined – if you want to use these as a snack, leave the tails on.
- rind of one lemon, grated
- in a bowl, rub lemon rind into prawns, then taking a small amount of pastry (about 10 threads, long), wrap the prawn around and around from tip to tail.
- deep-fry at a fairly hot temperature – the prawns only take about 2-3 minutes each to cook.
- Serve with curry dipping sauce and eat while hot!
Notes on cooking:
The korma sauce is a child-friendly favourite in my house, and so I tend to make up great quantities without the chilli and freeze it. Then I take it out of the freezer and add it to pan-fried chicken breast fillet and frozen peas and serve it with rice. In fact, the night I made these prawns, I served them as a main course with rice and a broccoli salad. The carrot is not a traditional ingredient, but I practice a game in my house called “hide the veggies”, and I have found that it is also useful in adding colour to the sauce. The spice mix can be played with, and you might even find a garam masala mix on the supermarket shelf that is similar to the flavours I have used.
When you are left with remaining knaffe pastry, make baclava!