Pan Fried Tamarind Prawns with Cucumber Salad

My grandmother used to make this dish for us. It is cooked with very simple ingredients but yet addictive. The tamarind with the prawns when you fry with oil, somehow it release an unforgettable evocative fragrance in the air. Whenever my grandmother make this dish, I can already smell it 20 steps away from my house.

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Tamarind Prawns with Cucumber Salad

When you are done cooking with the prawns, it will look charred because of the tamarind and frying process. But this is the best part. So, remember, when you peel the prawn heads, try the juice in the prawn heads. The sourness from the tamarind, the charred prawn heads skin and the sweet and briny prawn head juice will just give you an indescribable experience. Till now, while writing this post, I already salivated for several times and no kidding.

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Tamarind Prawns

I have also made a quick cucumber salad to go with the tamarind prawns. Nop, no rice for me today!

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Now you see the prawn
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Now you don’t 😉

Pan Fried Tamarind Prawns with Cucumber Salad (serves 2)



  • 300g of medium size prawns
  • 50 g of tamarind pulp (with seeds)
  • 3 tablespoon of water
  • 1 teaspoon of salt
  • ½ teaspoon of sugar
  • 2 tablespoon of vegetable oil

Cucumber Salad:

  • 1 cucumber
  • 1 tablespoon of rice wine vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon of water
  • ½ teaspoon of sugar
  • A pinch of salt
  • For garnishing:
  • ½ teaspoon of toasted sesame seeds
  • A sprig of spring onion (the green part), sliced thinly


  1. Clean the prawn and keep the prawn heads.
  2. Add water to the tamarind pulps and mix and mash it into a tamarind paste.
  3. Add salt and sugar to the paste.
  4. Marinate the prawns with the tamarind paste for at least 1 hour.
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  5. In the mean time, let’s make the cucumber salad. Using a julienne peeler, peel the cucumber into a bowl. Combine rice wine vinegar, salt and sugar in another bowl. Add it to the cucumber. Set aside in fridge until the prawns are ready to serve. Garnish with sesame seeds and spring onion when ready.
  6. In a frying pan, heat up the oil in medium heat. Put in the prawns to pan fry. Each side of prawn should take about 1.5 minute.
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  7.  Serve along with the cucumber salad.
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Tamarind Prawns with Cucumber Salad

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