Pineapple Salsa King Prawns

This is one of the most delicious things I’ve made in months! The fruity pineapple (substituting the tomato in regular salsa) gives a sharper flavour, and the acidic pineapple juice means you don’t need to add any vinegar. Pineapple also goes beautifully with the light fruity tones from the habanero. A single habanero is hot enough that just one will make this dish nice and spicy. I just love the aroma of freshly chopped habanero!

If prawns aren’t your thing, chicken would probably work just fine. Or you could try some diced bell peppers and broccoli florets for a vegetarian dish.

Ingredients

  • 1 tsp Mustard Seeds
  • 5 shallots (peeled, finely chopped)
  • 1 fresh orange habanero (chopped)
  • 1 fresh red jalapeño (chopped) – for colour
  • Flesh from 1 small pineapple (crushed)*
  • 1 tsp ground corriander seed
  • 1 dash of paprika
  • 1-3 tsp apple pectin (optional)**
  • 300g raw shelled king prawns
  • 2 tbsp Olive Oil

* Actually, you can used tinned pineapple. Pineapple is so acidic it keeps very well in a can. If you’re using fresh pineapple, you can either chop it, then crush it with the flat of the knife, or just use a blender. Make sure you keep the juice!

** Apple pectin retains a hint of apple flavour which should blend well with the taste of the habanero. Alternatively, you could try dried mango powder, which is also rich in pectin and should also taste good in this dish.

Method

  1. Heat the olive oil in a pan. When it’s hot, add mustard seeds and chopped shallots. Fry these, stirring lightly, till the shallots are nicely caramelised around the edges (the edges should be brown, but not crispy).

  2. Add the pineapple, chillis and spices, together with any pineapple juice you’ve saved. This should be slightly watery, so you’ll want to heat it up and simmer it for a while to reduce the liquid. You might want to add some apple pectin to help the mixture thicken (much lighter than cornflour — pectin is usually used in jam making). Keep stirring well, to make sure it doesn’t burn.
  3. When the mixture is hot throughout and not too watery, throw in your prawns. Keep stirring until the prawns are cooked through (this shouldn’t take more than a few minutes). Be careful not to overcook the prawns, or they’ll taste all rubbery.

Serve hot, over a bed of rice. To complement this dish, a glass of guava juice or a light white wine (possibly a chablis) would be ideal.

Bon appetit!

About Invader Xan

Molecular astrophysicist, usually found writing frenziedly, staring at the sky, or drinking mojitos.
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