Goan Prawn Curry

If you had to pick a favourite between shellfish and fish, what would you pick? I’m on team shellfish. Give me some prawns, crab, clams any day. Don’t get me wrong, I like fish too, but I just find shellfish tastier, fresher, easier to eat (yes my laziness has a tiny role to play in this decision).

If there is a prawn curry on the menu, I will usually try it. Goan prawn curry is on of my favourites! When in Goa, must have this in every shack/restaurant I visit.

It is light, delicious and super easy to make. The key is in the masala, get the spices right and you’re on your way to making a good curry.

Add to this the usual suspects – onion, ginger, tomatoes, coconut. You’re in the curry zone 🙂

Along with the coconut, I also added some Goan vinegar which I got thanks to a colleague at my old office. It adds a beautiful tanginess and depth to the curry. You can also use regular white vinegar. There’s also some tamarind in here and it adds a sweetness as well as sourness to the curry. Yum!

You can use prawns with or without the shell, as you prefer. I’ve tried this with both. I use medium prawns so that I can pack in a lot of prawns into this curry and every bite has a juicy prawn in it 😍

Prawns don’t take long to cook, just about 4-5 minutes at the most. So spend some time getting the curry just right and then another 10 minutes later your meal is ready. Making the curry is all about tasting as you go and adjusting based on what you like. I spent a fair bit of time experimenting with this and think this tastes amazing!

I made this for lunch, for a friend, and it got rave reviews. I made a big batch but the two of us wiped it clean. Happy tummies, happy us!

The sweetness of the prawns, the tanginess from the vinegar,tamarind and tomatoes, the creaminess of the coconut, the spices all come together to make this glorious curry. You need to try it and I know you will fall in love with it!

Have it with some rice and you’re set for a super meal. Post meal nap highly advised. This will take you back to the beaches and happy Goa days, enjoy it 🙂

Goan Prawn Curry

  • Servings: 4
  • Difficulty: Easy
  • Print


850g prawns – cleaned and deveined

1 tsp peppercorns

1 tsp coriander seeds

6-8 dried red chillis

1 tsp cumin seeds

1/2 tsp turmeric powder

6 cloves garlic

2 cups (400 ml) coconut milk

1.5 tsp tamarind paste

1 onion – finely diced

2 tomatoes – finely diced

1 tbsp ginger – finely diced

2 tbsp coconut oil

1/2 tsp sugar

1/2 tsp Goan/white vinegar

10-12 curry leaves

1/2 cup water

Salt to taste


  1. Wash and drain the prawns. Pat dry with a kitchen towel
  2. Blitz the pepper, coriander, cumin, red chillis, turmeric, garlic, vinegar, tamarind and coconut milk till you get a smooth paste
  3. Heat oil in a wok (kadhai). Add onions and ginger and cook till brown (3-4 mins). Keep stirring so it doesn’t stick/burn
  4. Add tomatoes and a pinch if salt. Cook till they become soft and oil releases from the sides, around 5 minutes
  5. Transfer the blitzed paste into the wok and mix well. Add a little salt and let it come to a boil
  6. Simmer for 10-12 minutes till the curry thickens and colour darkens slightly
  7. Add the sugar, water and mix well. Cook for 4-5 minutes
  8. Adjust salt and cook the curry to the thickness you like. I usually leave it the way it is at this stage
  9. Add prawns, cover with curry and cook for 4-5 minutes till just done
  10. Toss in the curry leaves and cook for 1-2 minutes
  11. Switch off the heat, cover the pan and let it sit for 5-7 minutes. This helps the flavours absorb and settle down. Serve with rice

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A baker, a dancer, a marketeer. Sometimes lazy. Always up to try new food, read interesting books and meet amazing people :)

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