This is NOT just a recipe, it’s a Family Heirloom passed down from generations and cooked with great relish by my mother-in-law and her mum who is now 82 years old and still can stir up a some to-die-for finger licking dishes!
But before I start off rattling the ingredient list, a ”slice” of some history about the origin of this rice and prawn union.Coastal cuisine in the western Indian state of Maharashtra relished by the Maharahstrian community relies heavily on the use of all versions of the coconut, the most potent form being as part of the goda masala. This and ofcourse, the abundant availability fresh sea-food has given birth to many delicacies many of which most are age-old like this dish.
It’s also my prized comfort food and guarantees a great Sunday afternoon nap 🙂 and will ensure your crowned kitchen queen and master chef of all things nice hehehehe
Ok here goes, the ingredient list – This dish serves 2 adults for 2 meals with 2 generous helpings each and leftovers for the next day.
- Prawns or Koolambi as they are called in Marathi – 500gm
- Plain rice – I use basmati , I use 2.5 cup measures of my rice cooker measure
- Bay leaves -3-4
- ”Goda” Masala
- Tumeric Powder
- Red Chilli powder
- Half a slice
- Cooking Oil
- Salt to taste
- Ginger and Garlic Paste
- Wet coconut grated and make a fine puree with it – the wet coconut is available as a frozen product at any Indian Grocery store – use about a handful.
- Two Large red onions finely sliced
- Cinnamon (Dalchini)- 3-4 large bits
- Few cloves
- Green Masala – Use a bunch or coriander and 2 green chillies and give them a spin in the mixer, store this fine paste in the freezer and use as and when needed, it’s one of the most basic marination masala’s in most Maharashtrian non-veg dishes especially seafood.
- On a pan on low heat saute one finely chopped onion and the fresh wet grated coconut till the onions starts to caramelise, after this cools give it a spin in the mixer and make a fine paste.
- Marinate the washed rice in some the above wet grated coconut and onion paste, some ‘goda masala’ , a squeeze of half of a lime, salt, ginger and garlic paste and some Cinnamon. Keep Aside.
- De-vein the prawns, wash under tap water and marinate with red chilli powder, turmeric and green masala.
- Take oil in a vessel and saute the marinated prawns for 1-2 minutes.
- Heat Oil in a vessel big enough to cook the rice and prawns together that will hold the water as well , add the cloves, remaining cinnamon and one very finely chopped red onion, add the marinated rice and stir it , do this on a low flame.
- Then add the marinated prawns and water, for rice dishes water is always double the measure of the rice used so for 2.5 cup measures of rice use 5 cups of water.
- Cover and cook on a low flame.
- Serve piping hot with curd or pickle.
- I generally serve this with a spicy Curry.
In a pan heat some oil and add asafoetida one pinch , add puree of 2-3 large red onions and one tomato and puree of 1 handful of wet grated coconut , season with red chilli powder , turmeric,salt, green masala, goda masala and cook on a low flame with enough water to ensure a thick curry , Amp up the red chilli powder and green masala to your level of tolerance of spicy food !
Do let me know via comments if any of you made this dish and what you though of the recipe!
P.S: Forgive the poor image quality , I have a Simple Canon Camera which I am unable to use too well and add to that the total lack of any photography skills but well the food tasted awesome :), that’s what counts right , hehhe!
Update in 2013
A few days after I published this recipe, ‘A’ gifted me my first DSLR Camera – a shiny new Canon 600DS and I’ve been clicking away like a happy bunny ever since 🙂
To my absolute delight, he helped me add a new lens to my kit and gifted me a 50mm f 1.8 lens this year on my birthday. It is great for close-up food shots and true to the reviews, it works well in low light conditions.
Here’s an example:
The image below is from my kit lens where am struggling to fit everything in frame and focus on the prawns, I have sharpened the image, adjusted light and cropped it using Picasa 3.
Now see the difference in the image below, I love how the prawns are in sharp focus and how am able to easily adjust and fit everything in the viewfinder.I have adjusted light and sharpened the image very slightly, I am truly pleased with the results 🙂