Most of the nostalgia-evoking recipes I have written about are from my gramma’s kitchen. While I can go on and on (which I am sure I’ll be doing again soon), I wanted to write about some popular ones from my mom’s kitchen. Chemmeen Peera aka prawns peera, or prawns cooked with grated coconut, is one such in-house favourite.
Prawns peera is an authentic Kerala delicacy celebrating some of the ingredients the state is famous for – most notably lovely seafood, prawns in this instance. This is not a fiery curry. Mellow sweetness of grated coconut, and the subtle tanginess of pot tamarind (kudampuli), with the understated heat from green chillies, bring out the best of prawns.
Without compromising on the flavours, I have simplified her recipe a notch. It takes less than half an hour to cook and serve this dish. Paired with some steamed rice, this is an ultimate comfort food combo.
A popular variant is cooked with clams instead of prawns. It tastes fantastic too. You can replace prawns with any small white fish to make a delicious fish peera.
Another delectable variant that I came across recently is a vegan option which uses mushrooms as the main ingredient. Despite not having any seafood, it tasted great! 🙂
If you like prawns, don’t leave without checking out the following recipes.
Prawns Peera (Chemmeen Peera)
- 500 grams prawns / shrimp
- 1 cup grated coconut
- 2 pieces pot tamarind (kudampuli)
- 1/2 teaspoon turmeric
- 1/2 teaspoon coriander powder
- to taste salt
- drizzle coconut oil
- 1 inch piece ginger
- 5 - 6 pods garlic
- 8 - 10 shallots
- 1 sprig curry leaves
- 2 - 3 green chillies
- Devein and clean the prawns. Small to medium size prawns are ideal for this recipe.
- If you are using bigger ones, cut them to smaller pieces to get an even coating of flavours.
- Chop ginger, garlic, and shallots. Gently crush them together, and add to a pot along with the prawns, grated coconut, green chillies (slit lengthwise) and pot tamarind.
- Add salt, turmeric powder and coriander powder.
- Add half cup water, and mix well.
- Close the lid, and bring to boil on a low flame.
- Open the lid, and cook for a few more minutes.
- Reduce till the water start to disappear, and switch off.
- Drizzle with some coconut oil. Give it a gentle stir before serving.
- Prawns peera is a perfect accompaniment for steamed rice. Serve hot.