Saturday, January 27, 2007

Crispy fragrant jumbo prawns

Thursday night is late-night shopping here, which means that the high street stores close at eight or nine rather than at six in the evening (hardly late-night, but late enough to allow me a chance to browse after work). I like shopping, even if admitting it to my colleagues earns me raised eyebrows and ill-disguised contempt (most of them eschew the city for nature and muddy walks, and despise shopping to the point that one colleague even sends other people to buy her clothes and shoes...), but then what they don't understand is that I like to wander around looking almost as much as I like to buy. In fact, I often come home empty-handed or simply with a book or two (I don't count books, since they denote necessity rather than luxury in my financial code). Anyway on Thursday I went to pick up the almond cream Kitchenaid blender that I had ordered on Wednesday - it was on sale, and I simply couldn't resist it. I had a blender already, so this was sheer profligacy, but it does go beautifully with my mixer and it is more sophisticated than my previous blender (which I am going to give to a friend whose blender was broken by her accident-prone mother). En route to collect the blender, we stopped at the fishmongers and bought some raw medium sized prawns; we knew we wouldn't have lots of time to cook when we got home and this breadcrumbed prawn dish seemed ideal for a night when you hit the kitchen running.

First, whizz white bread into breadcrumbs, then mix with chopped parsley, lemon zest, olive oil and Parmesan and lay the mixture on a tray to dry.

Toss the prawns in seasoned flour, then dip into whisked egg, then coat in the breadcrumbs. It is assembly line cooking, doesn't require a great deal of thought, and is pretty speedy. Place the crumbed prawns on an oiled baking tray and bake for 10 minutes or so until crispy and golden at 220C.

Sprinkle the prawns with salt and serve with rocket dressed with lemon juice and olive oil; serve with lemon quarters.

Jamie's photo shows a very restrained serving, with two huge prawns and just a few rocket leaves. My prawns were smaller but also we were eating this as a main meal (with bread), so I upped the quantities of both prawns and rocket (I am a tad obsessive about eating enough greens). I also used lemon salt to season both flour and prawns, to heighten the flavour. It was absolutely delicious - a dinner to repeat, definitely; Jamie suggests using squid, scallops or sardines as alternatives, which could also be good to try - and it was all so quickly done! Fast food again.

(In case anyone's interested and as an aside, I have tried out the blender. We had smoothies this morning - raspberries and blueberries blitzed with apple juice and yoghurt. They were pretty invigorating.)


Freya said...

And I could have eaten more prawns than that! Where do chefs think that normal people eat????
Hope you enjoyed the bread!
Freya x

Andrew said...

wish I had brought those prawns at my local butcher now! Gonna have to wait until Tuesday now...

Anonymous said...

Looks really delicious. Love,Sabs.

Kathryn said...

The prawns were really good, Freya and Andrew - and yes, two would have been a bit risible. Actuslly though the breadcrumbs were really filling - I wouldn't have wanted more - though I did have some chocolate afterwards...

Sabs - thank you for popping in. It's always nice to talk to you.

Kathryn x

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