We all have times when we get home late from somewhere and have to put together a meal. Tired, nothing defrosted and all out of leftovers. This seems to happen to me a lot. My planning skills definitely need attention; and I’ll be working on that. Even so, I think there will always be times when life catches us short, leaving us rifling through the pantry, the refrigerator and the freezer wandering what on earth there is to prepare in half an hour for a satisfying and filling dinner.
This recipe I am going to present here came about through necessity. I had prepared a pot roast and set it on the stove top to cook. Some time later I got up to check, only to discover I had turned on the wrong element. I was so annoyed with myself. Not only was there no way the pot roast would be cooked for dinner, I had wasted a whole load of electricity! Ugh! I was left with very little time to pull together another option for dinner. I quickly put the pot roast pot on to start cooking – at least that would provide lunch for the next couple of days.
Then I headed to the freezer in search of inspiration. Frozen prawns have recently become one of my go-to’s for a quick cook, which I still find pleasantly surprising. There was a time when I couldn’t eat shrimp or prawns, and would be very sick on just one accidental prawn tail in my food (yes, that did happen). I believe my issues stemmed from one Christmas lunch when I was about 9 or 10 years old. A great-aunt force fed me a shrimp cocktail! The return journey of that dish did nothing to increase my opinion of it and being sick on Christmas Day is not my favourite memory. The staying power of food trauma is very real; that one dish affected me for many, many years. Thankfully I have been able to overcome the mental barrier and now relish any chance to eat prawns (which, admittedly, are still more appealing than shrimp).
So back to the frozen prawns… I grabbed the bag, about two cups left in it, and had to come up with something…and no time to search the internet for inspiration. I could have just done butter and garlic – there’s absolutely nothing wrong with that. Totally tasty. Having a food blog however, encourages me to try and do something different at almost every meal. It has been good for me!
So I whipped up this quick prawn meal that was healthy and tasty. All up it took less than 30 minutes from freezer to plate, including preparation and cooking of the vegetables. It could be done in less if the prawns were paired with a ready-made salad or coleslaw.
I hope you like my new recipe.
♥ Ingredients ♥
2 cups frozen prawns
For the marinade:
1 T olive oil
1 t minced garlic*
1 t minced ginger*
4 t lemon juice
1/4 ground white pepper
1/2 t dried oregano
1 t dill*
1 t fish sauce**
Butter and olive oil for cooking
Extra lemon juice for serving
* I used ginger and garlic from jars for speed and ease. I also used a dill paste. Allow a couple of extra minutes if preparing from fresh ingredients and adjust quantities as fresh is usually a little bit stronger in flavour.
** Because of the fish sauce and the salt that is often used in bottling crushed ginger, garlic and dill, there was no need to add further salt to the dish. Using fresh ingredients will reduce the salt levels and may require the addition of a little salt. Always check seasoning and adjust to your personal preference.
♥ Method ♥
1. Place frozen prawns in a 2 litre jug or bowl. In a small bowl or cup mix all of the marinade ingredients together. Pour over the prawns and give a quick stir around. Don’t worry about coating the prawns completely, just try and get some of the mixture on each prawn.
2. Prepare your accompaniments. I chopped up carrot, brussel sprouts, cauliflower, and purple kale to go alongside our prawns. I cooked them in a pot that is part steamer and part pressure cooker which leaves the vegetables very tasty and nutritious, cooked in only a couple of tablespoons of water.
3. While the vegetables are cooking, heat up a wok or electric frypan. Add a little butter and olive oil (about a teaspoon of each) and throw in the prawns. Scrape any marinade out on top and stir fry the prawns until the flesh is opaque.
4. Serve with a squeeze of fresh lemon juice over top, alongside your choice of cooked vegetables or salad. To stretch out the servings to accommodate 3 or 4 people, I suggest cooking up some sweet potato (this will add to the preparation time).
And there it is. A quick dish that my husband and I both found immensely satisfying. I’m just sad that now I have no more prawns in my freezer and shopping day is over a week away. I better get to planning my meals for the next week!
Happy and healthy eating,