Turmeric prawns with cavolo nero

IMG_4295At this time of year I am inundated with Cavolo Nero – in fact I overwintered it, but it’s quite a tricky one to cook. Discovered this delightful recipe (really for kale) but the black kale is perfect. Plus lots of ginger and turmeric so immunity boosting as well! I use the grey prawns from the channel caught by the marvellous Mick in his trawler – no imported tigers here please! And we’re still metric here, thank you very much! And it’s easy peasy too…

Serves 4
raw prawns 5 per person, shelled and de-veined
ground turmeric ½ tsp 
salt 1 tsp 
vegetable oil 3 tbsp 
dried red chillies2
onion 1 medium, finely chopped 
garlic 2 cloves, finely chopped 
fresh ginger 1 x 4cm piece, grated 
tomatoes 2, cut into small pieces 
chilli powder 1 tsp 
kale 400g, finely sliced (it should be like cabbage sliced for coleslaw)


Place the prawns in a bowl, sprinkle over half the turmeric and salt, rub well on both sides of the prawns and leave for 10 minutes.

In a deep frying pan, heat the oil over a high heat. Gently squeeze the marinating prawns to remove any excess liquid. In Bengal, turmeric and salt are commonly added to seafood – the salt is used to remove excessive water. Add the prawns to the pan and flash-fry for just a few seconds. The prawns should only briefly touch the pan. They will be cooked again. The aim is to seal the prawns, they should curl up while you fry them. Using a slotted spoon, remove the prawns from the pan, place on a plate and set aside.

Using the same pan, add the dried red chillies followed by the onion, garlic and ginger, and the remaining turmeric and salt. Fry over a medium-high heat for a few minutes, or until the raw smell of the garlic and turmeric has disappeared. Add the tomatoes and continue to cook on high. Return the prawns to the pan together with the chilli powder and kale, and stir over medium-high heat. Taste for seasoning. The dish should not have a lot of moisture, and it goes well with rice.

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