Prawn Chettinad

PRAWNS !! I can never say no them 😀

Nature has provided so much for us to relish, stop wars and lets eat.

Jumbo prawns are not always available in the market 😦 Delhi being far away from the coasts makes it more rarer. So when I see these babies I bring some home. I was not very keen to cook it the usual Bengali style. I went looking for something. The Chettinad cuisine is lip- smacking and easy to cook.

I must say the various communities and royal families from India developed their own unique cooking styles, which have stood the test of time. My salute to all the khansamas/cooks for developing such finger- licking fares. We are reaping the benefits of their hardwork 🙂


Chettinad cuisine is known for it’s spiciness, tanginess and aroma. The food belongs to the Chettinad region of the southern state of India, Tamil Nadu. The Chettiar community belonging to this region were successful tradesmen.


Most of the dishes are usually eaten with plain boiled rice or rice based accompaniments like dosais, appams etc.


5-6 nos – prawns (jumbo prawns used in this recipe)

For the gravy :

2 cups – finely chopped onion

1/2 cup – tomato puree

1 tsp – ginger paste

1 tsp – garlic paste

2 tbsp – tamarind pulp

1 tsp +1 – tumeric powder

1 tsp – coriander powder

1 tsp – red chili powder

1 tsp – mustard seeds

1 sprig – curry leaves

1 cup – water

1 tbsp – oil

salt to taste

To roast 

1/4 tsp – cumin seed

1/4 tsp – carom seeds/ ajwain

1/4 tsp – fennel seeds

1/2 tsp – poppy seeds

1/4 tsp – fenugreek seeds

1/4 tsp – coriander seeds

2 nos – dry red whole chili

5-6 nos – peppercorns

1 nos – cardamom

3-4 nos – cloves


Shell and de-vein the prawns. Keep the head and tail intact (optional). Rinse them well and marinate them with 1 tsp tumeric powder and some salt for 15 mins.

Roast all the spices mentioned above till fragrant, if possible, separately. Cool and grind it to a coarse powder.

Heat oil in a pan and temper with mustard seeds and curry leaves. Add the chopped onion and fry till translucent. Add the ginger and garlic paste. Fry for a couple of minutes and add the tomato puree, tumeric, red chili and coriander powder. Cook till the spices are fragrant and releases oil in the sides.

Add the marinated prawns and cook with the spices for a few minutes.

Add the tamarind pulp, ground spices and cook for 2-3 minutes. Pour in a cup of water. Season with salt. Lower the heat. Cover and cook for 6-7 mins.

Increase the heat and let the gravy thicken to your desired consistency.

Take it off fire.


Serve hot with plain boiled rice.


Happy cooking !! 🙂

Cheers !! 😀


About andy

hi there.....friends call me Andy :) I am a school teacher by profession. Passionate about reading, some random experimental cooking, some hit 'n' miss photography......and i am a dreamer ;) Thank you for popping by :)
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14 Responses to Prawn Chettinad

  1. skd says:

    PRAWNS !! I can never say no to them too!! I can’t help drooling Andy!!!

  2. Indira says:

    Hi Andy! I love prawns and pomfret. I’m unable to fry pomfret nicely . Is there a trick or secret to fry it?

  3. badfish says:

    IF I pay the freight will you FEDEX me a plate! Who doesn’t like prawns!

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