Sunday, February 8, 2009

Feb 08: Chili Prawns?

If you've every watched Iron Chef, then you'll be familiar with Chef Chen Kenichi. His signature dish is Chili Prawns. The judges describe the dish as extraordinary - spicy, sweet and garlicky. One of the few dishes from the show that I would want to try.

Also, a local restaurant makes "sweet chili prawns". I don't know if it's similar to chili prawns, but it's a delicious dish too.

Here's my improvised attempt to make a chili prawns dish.

Chili Prawns (Take One)

~Mix and let marinade about 15 minutes before cooking.
1/2 Shrimp, shelled and deveined (used 51/60 shrimp)
2 T Corn Starch
1 T Wine
2 t Soy Sauce
Dash of garlic powder.

~ Sauce Ingredients
1/4 C Chicken Stock (or water)
2 T Ketchup
1 t Chili Sauce
1/2 t Sugar
1 Green Onion, Chopped
1 Clove Garlic, Minced
1 T Vinegar

1. Heat the wok (or a saute pan) until hot!
Use about 1 to 2 T oil and add shrimp in a single layer... Cook about 1 minute.

2. Flip shrimp and add the garlic and green onion.
After another minute add the sauce ingredients and cook until boiling.
Use vinegar to taste.

Note: It is typical to cook the shrimp about 80%, remove from the wok to cook the sauce. When the sauce is boiling, the shrimp is added back to finish cooking.... about another minutes or two. I chose not to do that since I didn't want wash more dishes.

The finished dish... The shrimp had enough cornstarch where I didn't need to add more to thicken the sauce.

The dish turned out nicely.

With a hot pan, the dish was cooked in about 7 to 10 minutes... Maybe a little quicker if I had my act together.

Dish notes:
Spicy - I thought this dish would be a bit mild, but surprisingly had a little heat. 1 tsp of chili sauce is a nice level.
Garlic - needs more.
Sugar/Sweetness - needs more... maybe 1 tsp.
Shrimp - Almost overcooked... tender, but on the cusp of being rubbery. Will have to "twice cook" the shrimp as mentioned in my note above.
Sesame oil - add a few drops for next trial.
Sour - Needs just a touch more acidity.
Corn starch - can get by with 1 T instead of 2 T


Aalycat said...

I'm trying out this meal tonight and plan to use your experiment and advice. I'll let you know how it goes! :)

Eat4Fun said...

Aalycat... I hope your dish turned out nicely. I'd like to hear how the dish turned out. I rewatched Iron Chef and noticed Chen Kenichi used some more ingredients that I didn't account for.