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Prawn curry

A Sri Lankan curry that uses tomato as a souring agent and minimal spicing.
Prep Time15 mins
Cook Time20 mins
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: Sri Lankan
Servings: 4 people


  • Saucepan
  • Measuring jug
  • Kitchen knife
  • Wooden spoon


  • 1 kg prawns in their shell
  • 2 tomatoes
  • 1 onion
  • 2 thin slices ginger
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 5 cm lemon grass stalk
  • 1 stick cinnamon (about 8 - 10 cm)
  • 1 or 2 green or red chillies
  • 1/2 tsp turmeric
  • 1 sprig curry leaves
  • 400 ml thick coconut milk
  • 1 lime
  • pinch salt
  • 4 tbsp vegetable oil


  • Chop the tomatoes into small chunks.
  • Chop the onion small.
  • Chop the ginger, garlic, chillies very small.
  • Prepare the coconut milk by mixing 2 heaped tablespoons of powdered coconut milk in 400ml of hot water. If using canned coconut milk, use one heaped teaspoonful.
  • Heat the oil in a saucepan.
  • Add the onion and cook till they are soft.
  • Add the garlic, ginger, turmeric, chillies, tomatoes, lemon grass, cinnamon to the saucepan.
  • Strip the leaves off the curry leaf sprig and add them to the pan.
  • Let this fry for a minute or so, moving the mixture gently with the spoon.
  • Add the coconut milk.
  • Add a pinch of salt.
  • Bring the gravy to a simmer and let it simmer for five minutes.
  • Add the prawns and cook till they a just firm (15 to 20 minutes depending on the size).
  • Squeeze the lime over the dish just before serving.