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 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 brings 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! 🙂