Step-by-step Thai cooking, 64pp.
by Jacki Passmore
Murdoch Books, Sydney, 1991
Cooking on page 32
Our recent road trip to Perth was a great fact-finding mission for cooking on page 32.
One early stop was to visit Jan and Russ in Warrnambool, where I promptly ransacked her cookbooks. I didn’t steal any, just borrowed the contents of promising page 32s, like this one.
Page 32 doesn’t get much better than this.
Garlic prawns in hot sauce
1 kg green prawns
1 medium onion
1 tablespoon chopped garlic
2 teaspoons shredded ginger
1 fresh red chilli, seeded and slice
3 tablespoons vegetable oil
60 g sliced bamboo shoots
2 tablespoons Thai sweet chilli sauce
2 tablespoon fish sauce
3 tablespoons water
1 teaspoon cornflour
small bunch sweet basil
Peel the prawns, leaving the tails and last section of the shell in place. Cut deeply down centre back and remove the dark vein. Press prawns out flat.
Peel the onion and slice thinly from top to bottom to give short curved slices.
Stir-fry the onion, garlic, ginger and chilli in the oil until softened. Add the prawns and stir-fry until they change colour and begin to curl up. Add bamboo shoots and heat through.
Mix sweet chilli sauce, fish sauce, water and cornflour together, pour into pan and stir until thickened.
Pick leaves from basil and stir into the dish.
To shred ginger, peel and slice very thinly. Stack three or four slices together and cut into very fine shreds.
How it played out
I cheated—just a bit—and bought 750 grams of green prawns that were already shelled and deveined. Big time saver. I also got Poor John to finely mince the ginger using a mezzaluna (a curved double-handled knife often used as a chopper for herbs and the like).
Added two small Thai chillies, and the heat was perfect. Was out of basil, so used coriander (cilantro) instead. That worked especially well because I served the prawns with a cilantro lime rice.
The whole thing was ready in minutes and demolished just about as quickly.
Pick me up off the floor and shake me back to my senses. This dish is a knockout. Try it! Thanks Jan!